AppStore HQ, and Distimo have some interesting analysis on the sate of the Apple and Android App Stores.
The amount of developers for Android is growing steadily, and currently stands at just over 10,000 in number. But the Android Marketplace is still top heavy with free apps, and devs. don’t seem to be making that much money there.
In contrast Apple’s App Store has around 43,000 active developers producing software for it.
Around 1400 developers are said to be targeting both platforms. But with what success is not clear. Many may well just be dipping a toe with titles they can easily port and have already covered costs on with Apple.
Part of the reason that Google’s Android Market place is not taking off is that when compared to Apple’s it is actually a lot less easy to get into as a developer. Although Google makes the apps it distributes on behalf of developers available in 46 countries, they only allow 13 countries to have paid apps. And even less countries, 9 in total, are open for devs. to distribute apps through the Android Marketplace from.
Apple, on the other hand, sell in more than 60 countries, and I think allow developers from pretty much anyplace that has indigenous human life!
Distimo’s analysis of the two different app store ecosystems also paints a fairly clear picture of why developers are making money in Apple’s App Store over the Android Market. The average price of Apps in Apple’s iPad and iPhone App Stores is over $4.00. With top grossing apps coming in with a whopping average price of between $9.63 and $13.12 for the iPad and iPhone stores, respectively. It seems that some devs. at least are starting to push prices up.
That is actually a good thing for us all in the end. Higher prices, means more quality apps, and that the software market for Apple’s mobile devices is maturing – and will support more quality developers. Something that is essential for it to grow with us as customers, and produce more product of better quality for us.
Google’s Android Market average app prices languish in third place in Distimo’s report, beneath the Blackberry App Store, at between $3.29 and $4.27 for all paid apps and the top 100 paid apps, respectively.
What both these reports miss though is that the fragmentation of the hardware in the Android platform, with lots of incompatible OS versions, different screen sizes, and diverse hardware – whilst exciting for spec sheets – makes developer’s lives harder. It is simply not possible to produce an app that will run on all Android devices. This is a problem that developers working on software for iDevices don’t face, and consequently makes Apple far more attractive as a platform. Not to mention the 20 Million+ devices out there that Apple have sold already.
Do you think the Android Market will continue grow, and ultimately threaten Apple’s App Store dominance? Or is it too late already?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments.