Latest Distimo Report Shows Importance of Localization


If you have an application or you’re thinking of developing one, it’s important to take into consideration the global distribution of smartphones and tablets. If your app is an IM application, you should definitely consider localizing it to China as these apps are very popular there. The latest Distimo report sheds some light on how apps are distributed through the app stores in terms of regions. More after the jump.


Generally, it seems the further East you go the more localization becomes important. This makes sense as culturally things start to sort of break down as well. Canada and the US share the most in common, with Britain a close second. Once you get to China and Japan, you should be pretty much making apps that are specific to those countries.

Take a look at the major findings from the report:

  • Consumers around the world have very different preferences for apps. Globally, an average of 27% of the most popular applications are popular exclusively in one country in the Apple App Store for iPhone.
  • The Nokia Ovi Store has by far the highest proportion of applications published in just one country (29.4%), however the proportion of applications that is popular in just one country is not very different from the other stores.
  • Google Android Market has a higher proportion of content that is uniquely available in one country than the Apple App Store for iPad: 4.9% vs. 3.4%.
  • The United States is the country with the most exclusively published apps: the total number of applications published in the Apple App Store for iPhone in the United States alone is 7,158.
  • The most popular applications in the United States are highly similar to other countries: only 19% of the most popular apps in the Apple App Store in the US are popular in the US only.
  • Content differentiation is most important in Asia: 67% of the most popular applications in Japan are popular in that country only in the Apple App Store for iPhone. The same rings true in China where 56% of the most popular applications in the Apple App Store for iPhone are popular only in that country.
  • Aside from the proportion of locally popular apps per country, there are also blocks of countries that share a high number of overlapping top applications. These blocks are within the same region or share the same primary language in most cases. One of these blocks consists of the US, UK, Australia and Canada. These countries have an average overlap of top applications of 54%, compared to a storewide average of only 33%.

Head over to the Distimo site to download the latest publication.