My most recent App Search Analytics report from Chomp was written up in TechCrunch. Sarah Perez wrote a fantastic summary in her article, Games Decreasing In Popularity On Android, Entertainment Apps On The Rise, but I wanted to emphasize the most interesting points.
First, as implied by the title of the article, games are decreasing in popularity on Android as a share of total downloads, while that same share is increasing on iOS. In December, games were 36.1% of iTunes downloads and 22% of Android downloads.
Next, I wanted to tackle some misconceptions about app pricing on the two platforms. As a proportion, paid apps are an almost negligible proportion of downloads on Android (where they hover around 3-4%). Consequently, average “app purchase price” (shown below) is quite low compared to iOS, where the proportion of paid app downloads is between 6 and 10 times as high.
The above plot is misleading because it hides two important facts:
- $.99 apps are a VERY large proportion of iOS app downloads
- a relatively larger proportion of app downloads on Android are at “premium” price points due to this relative lack of apps at price points less than $1
As a result, average app price, conditional on non-free apps, is actually higher on Android.
The point of this article isn’t to steer developers of apps (premium or otherwise) to or away from either platform, each of which has its strengths. You can read up on monetization of platforms here and here (one article is very pro-iOS, the other very pro-Android). Rather, I wanted to reinforce a basic lesson from Stat 101: averages can be very misleading.