It seems that 2013-14 is the year that the Google Play Store has finally blown up. Whilst in the past Android’s main app bastion may have forever been consigned as an inferior version of Apple’s iOS App Store, the figures now show that it is now well on the way to forging its own path, rather than playing catch-up.
A special report has shown that in the past 12 months the app store has grown in size by a staggering 60%. It was just last summer that the Google Play Store hit the 1 million apps mark, but there is now already 1.5 million apps available for download.
That’s awful impressive, which means it’s even more incredible to see that app revenue is growing at a faster rate. The total app revenue for the past year was more than double that of the year before, which in turn was double the total of the year before that.
What may be slightly less surprising to see is that 98% of that revenue is from freemium titles. That said, 98% is still an incredibly large figure, especially when you consider that there is no up-front cost for these contributing titles.
The number of app downloads has increased too, by 50%. This means that revenue growth is outstripping growth of usage by quite some way. In other words, people are starting to spend more and more money on apps and in-app-purchases. Shocking, we know.
Around the world, growth has taken place in just about every major market you could care to mention. Perhaps the most surprising figure of all is that of Brazil’s explosive growth, increasing its total app downloads 2.6x over in Q1 2014 compared to Q1 2013 to become the second largest market for Google Play downloads. The USA is still way out ahead in first, with almost double as many downloads as Brazil. Russia, South Korea and India follow Brazil in that order.
With regards to revenue, though, Japan dwarfs its competition. Japanese Google Play customers spend over 50% more than their US counterparts, and more than ten times as much as we do in the UK.