Tag: app storePage 3 of 4

Comparing the Top Apple App Store and BlackBerry App World Downloads

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application stores

The Distimo Report is a monthly look at the five big application stores: Apple App Store, BlackBerry App World, Google Android Market, Nokia Ovi Store and Windows Marketplace for Mobile. This month’s report is based on December 2009 data, and has some interesting findings including:

  • In Google Android Market, 65% of the publishers are located in the United States, 12% in the United Kingdom, 20% in Europe and 3% in Japan.
  • Publishers located in Europe price their applications highest with an average of $4.42, which is 49% higher than publishers located in the United States.
  • Applications in Apple App Store, Google Android Market and Nokia Ovi Store are priced at around $3.50. Windows Marketplace for Mobile and BlackBerry App World are more expensive, averaging $6.99 and $8.26 respectively.
  • Because of Microsoft’s market validation guidelines and additional fees for distributing applications in more than one country, the number of applications available in some countries is only a small percentage (<5%) of applications available worldwide.

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We Might Have Different Smartphones But Our Apps Are The Same

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According to Mplayit, the latest “social app store”, regardless of smartphone, we’re all using the same apps. Mplayit tracked 42,000 visitors and their app preferences and it turns out that regardless of platform, the same apps tended to be most popular. Apps like Evernote, Shazam, Pandora, Yelp, Nimbuzz and Facebook all appeared at the top of the charts.
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BlackBerry App World Still Leads in Most Expensive Apps

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app platform pricing

GigaOM and Mobclix have put together a nice chart showing the average cost of a paid application on each smartphone app store. We have talked a few times about how App World has the highest priced apps relative to the other smartphones, and to date, it still leads by over a $1 compared to the next highest Windows Mobile. RIM should be much more active in helping developers drive these prices down. At the very least, App World needs a better promotional system similar to the BlackBerry Cool Store, so they can offer a Deal of the Day, BOGO campaigns and MobileHeist sales.

Mplayit launches BlackBerry app store on Facebook

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It sort of feels like everyone is getting an app store these days. The latest is Mplayit, who have created a Facebook-based app store for BlackBerry, iPhone as well as generally “mobile”. The app store gets users to try before they buy and hopes they will share apps among friends on Facebook. It should be an interesting way for new users to discover BlackBerry apps. The major downside I’m seeing is that they don’t have nearly as big of a catalog as the major players, and I don’t see anything about software bundles, deals of the day or promotions.

The Three Rounds of the App Store Battle

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The mobile app market is maturing fast and as a developer with a successful app in App World, I wanted to prompt some debate on what the next wave of app stores will be like and how we can work together to get there.

Round 1 was started by Handango, and quickly followed by Handmark and MobiHand among others. Their global presence enables developers to deploy once and see their app appear on the Internet and on multiple carrier and affiliate sites. However, download volumes, on-device discoverability and ease of payment were historically poor. Interestingly, none of them (apart from GetJar) focused on free apps. Meanwhile, the carriers were rolling out their own app stores where the majority of downloads were ringtones, screensavers and games, but that was valuable because it educated their customers that downloading apps was possible. In summary, round 1 was the “for profit” app stores. As developers, we have a lot to thank those pioneers for.
Continue reading Widality President Terry Hughes’ take on the App Store evolution

Smartphone research comparing iPhone and BlackBerry often flawed

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The research behind iPhone and BlackBerry comparisons that is making its way into the mainstream media is almost always flawed. The media loves to talk about the prolific nature of the iPhone and how technologically advanced its users are, while almost implicitly ragging on BlackBerry.

A recent study claims that iPhone owners are much more likely to download apps and get involved with social networking than their BlackBerry-owning counterparts.

The study shows that about 72% of iPhone users are likely to have downloaded at least 10 third-party apps, but 73% of BlackBerry users have picked up five apps or less. The researchers add that iPhone owners are more willing to buy their apps than BlackBerry owners.

When it comes to downloading third party apps, this study failed to recognize that bulk apps, shouldn’t be recognized as multiple applications. They are essentially the same app, templated and replicated by changing a few small pieces of data. This is where RIM shines in that App World isn’t filled with the same amount of useless garbage.

With regards to social networking, the researchers found that roughly 71% of Apple users have a Facebook account versus 44% of BlackBerry users. Twitter follows a similar trend with 26% for iPhone versus 15% for BlackBerry.

Social networking discrepancies is a demographics issue, not a device issue as the research implies. While BlackBerry is moving its focus to the consumer market, it still has years of enterprise users behind it and this could be skewing the numbers. In the end, we all know that the BlackBerry is an incredibly powerful social networking tool. Whether or not the older BlackBerry demographic is using these services is another matter.

One element of the research that I find particularly flawed, is the research that says 83 percent of users prefer apps that cost below $5. This is a consistent mistake that researchers make. They think that just because you have asked someone what they want to pay for something, that that information is somehow valuable. The truth is that everyone wants to pay the minimum, and if possible, get it for free. The reality of the situation is that if your app is well designed and provides a tangible benefit to the user, the $5 benchmark is meaningless. Just look at TetherBerry, it’s a $50 application that is one of Mobihand’s best sellers.