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Apple's iOS App Store still handily trumps Google & Amazon offerings in new analysis

post #1 of 22
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Apple's iOS platform is widely considered to have the best mobile application ecosystem, and a new analysis of the App Store comparing it to Google Play for Android and the Amazon Appstore for Kindle Fire supports the notion that Apple remains head and shoulders above the competition.

App Store


The three digital download destinations were pitted against one another in the Pfeiffer Report's "2013 App Store Maturity Shootout." All three stores were compared in four key categories: search, discovery assistance, an evaluation grid maturity score, and user experience friction.

When the overall results for each mobile application store were tallied by Pfeiffer, Apple was the clear top choice, earning a score of 53.1 out of 100. That handily beat Google Play, which scored 40.9, as well as the Amazon Appstore, coming in with a score of 34.1.

Pfeiffer still sees a great deal of room for improvement for Apple's iOS App Store, particularly in making it a destination where users can more clearly learn more about applications and trends in the market.

App Store


"Current app stores do not fully reflect the breadth and richness of apps that are out there," the report states. "They work fine if all you are interested in is the next bestselling game. If, on the other hand, you are talking about a truly original app -- one that will drive the platform forward if it gets widely used -- (then) the chances of being discovered are slim."

In terms of individual rankings, Apple blew away the competition in terms of discovery assistance and content curation, earning 44 out of 100 compared to an 8.4 for the Amazon Appstore and 2.25 for Google Play. Apple's iOS App Store was also the clear leader in the eight-category "evaluation grid" maturity ranking, which focused on factors such as clearly-labeled tablet-specific apps, as well as editorial content and recommendations.

App Store


Apple lagged behind its chief competition, Google Play, when search capabilities and user experience friction were put to the test. Pfeiffer believes Apple should add natural language search to the App Store, and that the company should address what it sees as a "somewhat overpowering app store structure."

The three application stores were rated based on Pfeiffer's "2013 App Store Reference Definition," which the firm calls "an idealized set of features for a mature, sophisticated app store." The firm's proprietary "gold standard" serves as an independent reference by which to compare the different platforms from Apple, Google and Amazon.
post #2 of 22
And they include Amazon & Google in the shootout. How childish ¡
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post #3 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

And they include Amazon & Google in the shootout. How childish ¡

At least the report didn't come from IDC or Gartner so we can completely rely on this one. 1wink.gif
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post #4 of 22
Quote:
Apple lagged behind its chief competition, Google Play, when search capabilities and user experience friction were put to the test. Pfeiffer believes Apple should add natural language search to the App Store, and that the company should address what it sees as a "somewhat overpowering app store structure."

 Apple should not do this, this is how Google pushes people to the things it wants you to see and use, ie they paid Google to push you towards them. Apple does not care about pushing users to one program over another thus the reason developer and users like it. The best bubbles to the top not force to the top because someone bought their way there.

 

I personally never had an issue finding what I was looking for, i have seen some apps which I would have found sooner than later and they did not come up in the search and the reason being, the developer descriptions of the app was not that good, and that is their fault not the stores fault.

 

I am not sure how this company came up with its ideal score, so it is ideal to have 500 sub-categories, how did they determine that. 

post #5 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post

At least the report didn't come from IDC or Gartner so we can completely rely on this one. 1wink.gif

Ha! Well, it was posted on the internet, so it must be true.

I just don't get the large difference from this analysis. Are the App Stores from Amazon & Google really that bad? I know people can 'side load' software from some plaice other than what Google offers, but this works for Amazon as well I presume? Maybe people get their software from these other places and their Stores therefore get low scores as they don't feel any incentive to do something about it.

Or whatever, I really couldn't care any less than I already do for these other Stores as they don't offer anything for my devices. That might be a narrow-minded view, but I like the devices I use and won't switch to something else in order to access anything these Stores have to offer.
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post #6 of 22
While Apple's ecosystem is by far the best, I am getting tired of these breathless pronouncements of 'hundreds of thousands of apps' and 'billions of downloads' and 'hundreds of categories' and so so forth.

Such numbers have actually become the problem.

The App Store has become a mess. I have trouble finding anything anymore (unless I am specifically looking for it), the organization of categories is a bit chaotic, reviews and historical ratings are not readily apparent unless you dig a couple of levels deeper (the App Store only displays reviews of the current version, most of the time with zero reviews or ratings; most users don't bother with writing multiple reviews), etc. Updates to the iOS, form factor, OSX and XCode also mean that many apps are not current in terms of their full functionality or they have lots of quirks and bugs -- many developers have trouble keeping up.

So much so that my app downloads have slowed to a crawl. I am using my iOS devices to look at the web far more than I used to.
post #7 of 22

Amazon App store is such a pathetic piece of crap.

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post #8 of 22

That iOS ecosystem is the reason I think Apple should at least try to get the mid-range market. I hope Apple can avoid only going after the high end premium market. At some point, Apple will drop to less that 5% market share and dev will just move away to more popular platforms.  imo this trend will start in 2014/2015, the signs are apps getting out on Android only or on Android first. That being said, we are far from being there yet.

 

Also, Apple mid-range offering need to be decent.

 

The ipad 2 at $400 with an A5 is nothing short of a rip-off. That tablet is having trouble running some apps and it sold has brand new.  It could be a decent deal with 1g of ram and a A6 for example.

 

The same applies to the old ipad mini.  People with this hardware will get cut off from iOS updates, new features (for example airdrop) only 1 year after buiyng it. Again, a tweak to add a bit more ram and an A6 would have ensure this hardware is a better investment.

 

The iphone 5c is a decent mid-range attempt. Problem is its priced like an hign-end phone.

 

I dont know if its the margins, but you just cant keep 40%+ margins at mid-range. You need to rely on volume at this level and that is the point of going there anyway.


Edited by herbapou - 11/18/13 at 6:53am
post #9 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post
 

That iOS ecosystem is the reason I think Apple should at least try to get the mid-range market. I hope Apple can avoid only going after the high end premium market. At some point, Apple will drop to less that 5% market share and dev will just move away to more popular platforms.  imo this trend will start in 2014/2015, the signs are apps getting out on Android only or on Android first. That being said, we are far from being there yet.

 

Also, Apple mid-range offering need to be decent.

 

The ipad 2 at $400 with an A5 is nothing short of a rip-off. That tablet is having trouble running some apps and it sold has brand new.  It could be a decent deal with 1g of ram and a A6 for example.

 

The same applies to the old ipad mini.  People with this hardware will get cut off from iOS updates, new features (for example airdrop) only 1 year after buiyng it. Again, a tweak to add a bit more ram and an A6 would have ensure this hardware is a better investment.

 

The iphone 5c is a decent mid-range attempt. Problem is its priced like an hign-end phone.

 

I dont know if its the margins, but you just cant keep 40%+ margins at mid-range. You need to rely on volume at this level and that is the point of going there anyway.

 

Go home.  Apple does not sell junk

Apple Purchases last 12 months - iPhone 5S (two), iPhone 6, iPhone 6+ (two), iPadAir, iPadAir2, iPadMini2, AppleTV (two), MacMini, Airport Extreme, iPod Classic.
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post #10 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

Go home.  Apple does not sell junk

And yet they still sell devices with the a5.... Having a deluxe shelll is not very helpfull for runnng apps.

and my new ipad Air screen has image retention problems. Its something that is suppose to affect the new mini, but my new ipad mini is fine, its my Air that has the problem.
Edited by herbapou - 11/18/13 at 7:33am
post #11 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

That iOS ecosystem is the reason I think Apple should at least try to get the mid-range market.

Lawd no. Then we'd have more whiners on the Internet. More cheapskates. No, no. I say the smaller Apple stays the better.
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post #12 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

That iOS ecosystem is the reason I think Apple should at least try to get the mid-range market. I hope Apple can avoid only going after the high end premium market. At some point, Apple will drop to less that 5% market share and dev will just move away to more popular platforms.  imo this trend will start in 2014/2015, the signs are apps getting out on Android only or on Android first. That being said, we are far from being there yet.

Also, Apple mid-range offering need to be decent.

The ipad 2 at $400 with an A5 is nothing short of a rip-off. That tablet is having trouble running some apps and it sold has brand new.  It could be a decent deal with 1g of ram and a A6 for example.

The same applies to the old ipad mini.  People with this hardware will get cut off from iOS updates, new features (for example airdrop) only 1 year after buiyng it. Again, a tweak to add a bit more ram and an A6 would have ensure this hardware is a better investment.

The iphone 5c is a decent mid-range attempt. Problem is its priced like an hign-end phone.

I dont know if its the margins, but you just cant keep 40%+ margins at mid-range. You need to rely on volume at this level and that is the point of going there anyway.
Why would developers debut or solely move to a platform with 95% marketshare that only brings in 20% of the revenue? Also, you are not accounting for extra development costs due to fragmentation. IMO, Apple is nowhere near doomed until engagement and revenue generated per user rates drop drastically (which I don't see happening).
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post #13 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by freckledbruh View Post


Why would developers debut or solely move to a platform with 95% marketshare that only brings in 20% of the revenue? Also, you are not accounting for extra development costs due to fragmentation. IMO, Apple is nowhere near doomed until engagement and revenue generated per user rates drop drastically (which I don't see happening).

 

indeed Apple is not doom, for now. Also , I dont know where you get youre 20% revenu but market revenu is hard to keep track off because Android model is different. Android mostly give away apps and rely on ads and in app purchased. Apple app store has more up front revenu. The android market is compose of less wealthy people than Apple ecosystem, so they trick them with free apps because those consumers would not buy them with a price tag or would get a free hack version.

post #14 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

indeed Apple is not doom, for now. Also , I dont know where you get youre 20% revenu but market revenu is hard to keep track off because Android model is different. Android mostly give away apps and rely on ads and in app purchased. Apple app store has more up front revenu. The android market is compose of less wealthy people than Apple ecosystem, so they trick them with free apps because those consumers would not buy them with a price tag or would get a free hack version.

I used the 20% number just as an example but a quick google will show that apple user eyeballs are worth more per ad impression and have higher engagement which equals more time to reach those eyeballs. Basically, for the foreseeable future, apple has the android platform beat with regards to revenue for developers.
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post #15 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by freckledbruh View Post


Why would developers debut or solely move to a platform with 95% marketshare that only brings in 20% of the revenue? Also, you are not accounting for extra development costs due to fragmentation. IMO, Apple is nowhere near doomed until engagement and revenue generated per user rates drop drastically (which I don't see happening).

I think the developer small and large have learned their lessons from what happen in the PC world all through the 90's and 2000's. If you wanted to sell in to the mass PC markets you have to either be prepared for low profits and due to high support costs to handle all the version of Windows, and BIOS, Intel processors, and long list of controllers and mother boards. Or you told your customer right up front you only supports certain configurations which pissed off the cheap buying customers and reducing your market share to a subset of customers.

 

I think developers and such rather have higher profits and lower support costs and have a larger group of happier customers. The reason Apple store is loaded with app is because it is easy for the developers, but it also brought the developers from the PC world who do not worry about quality thus the reason you see lots of apps with low ratings.

post #16 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post
 

At some point, Apple will drop to less that 5% market share and dev will just move away to more popular platforms.  imo this trend will start in 2014/2015, the signs are apps getting out on Android only or on Android first. That being said, we are far from being there yet.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by analyst in 2012 View Post
 

At some point, Apple will drop to less that 5% market share and dev will just move away to more popular platforms.  imo this trend will start in 2013/2014, the signs are apps getting out on Android only or on Android first. That being said, we are far from being there yet.

 
Quote:
Originally Posted by analyst in 2011 View Post
 

At some point, Apple will drop to less that 5% market share and dev will just move away to more popular platforms.  imo this trend will start in 2012/2013, the signs are apps getting out on Android only or on Android first. That being said, we are far from being there yet.

 
Quote:
Originally Posted by analyst in 2010 View Post
 

At some point, Apple will drop to less that 5% market share and dev will just move away to more popular platforms.  imo this trend will start in 2011/2012, the signs are apps getting out on Android only or on Android first. That being said, we are far from being there yet.

 
Quote:
Originally Posted by analyst in 2009 View Post
 

At some point, Apple will drop to less that 5% market share and dev will just move away to more popular platforms.  imo this trend will start in 2010/2011, the signs are apps getting out on Android only or on Android first. That being said, we are far from being there yet.

 

Maybe you're right and the time has come, but I don't fancy those odds.

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post #17 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

.... The App Store has become a mess. I have trouble finding anything anymore (unless I am specifically looking for it) ...

I hear you ... I have the same problem in my home ... I can't find anything, unless I know what I'm looking for. Go figure.   ;)

Apple, bigger than Google, ..... bigger than Microsoft,   The universe is unfolding as it should. Thanks, Apple.
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post #18 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by newbee View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

.... The App Store has become a mess. I have trouble finding anything anymore (unless I am specifically looking for it) ...
I hear you ... I have the same problem in my home ... I can't find anything, unless I know what I'm looking for. Go figure.   1wink.gif

I hear you too, bro.

But my home is probably a little less cluttered than yours, and I don't go browsing for stuff at my place.
post #19 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

At some point, Apple will drop to less that 5% market share and dev will just move away to more popular platforms. 

There is a danger in using market share numbers for guidance.

What if Apple is only 5% of the market? There will still be a few hundred million iOS devices out there... in the hands of users who tend to spend money. That's all the developers care about.

In case you haven't noticed... Android is already the "popular platform" with over 80% of the market.

And yet... developers still focus on iOS even though it only has 12% of the market.

So again... market share is not a reliable indicator for developers to base their decisions on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

imo this trend will start in 2014/2015, the signs are apps getting out on Android only or on Android first.

If apps aren't coming out Android first or Android only when it has 80% of the market... what makes you think it will happen at 90% or more?

You cannot look at Android's phenomenal market share or installed base and automatically think bigger = better.

Developers have already pondered this... and Apple's platform is obviously more lucrative.

There may be a huge market of over a billion Android users out there... but the smaller market of Apple users actually earns the developers more money. That's why there are so many iOS firsts or iOS exclusives.

I've also seen this with Mac software. There are developers who solely make software for the Mac. Don't they know that Windows has 95% of the market?!?!

Yes they do. And they still focus on the Mac.

Again... bigger is not always better.

Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

That being said, we are far from being there yet.

Exactly. But a lot will have to change before Android is the preferred app platform for developers.

Like I said... if it hasn't happened by now... I'm not sure it will happen at all.

8 out of 10 smartphones being sold right now are running Android. Yet the next big app will launch on iOS.

That says something.
post #20 of 22
And so it begins... feels like the Apple of old. Can't win on numbers, so we will talk about less quantifiable things like usability. This study is a clear indicator of how badly Apple is loosing the war. Being outsold 10 to 1 in China and 5 to 1 throughout the rest of the world. The only country where Apple has a strong showing is the US where users are just ignorant enough of how much they are actually paying for their phones. If Obama can get his latest idea through congress, he will fix that and every Apple user will discover exactly how their phones cost and they will begin to buy Android.

As a Mac developer turned to Windows by sheer force of dollars 15 years ago, it is happening again. The commodity hardware will win. It has to. Apple better find something new to market or it's stock will start to drop like a rock.
post #21 of 22
Originally Posted by rivie62 View Post
Can't win on numbers, so we will talk about less quantifiable things like usability.

 

Usability is “less quantifiable”? Since when? If something works like Schmidt, that’s instantly revealed.

 
This study is a clear indicator of how badly Apple is loosing the war.

 

Sure it is, kiddo.

 
As a Mac developer turned to Windows by sheer force of dollars 15 years ago…

 

…you should be smart enough not to be making any of these comments, given that Apple’s ecosystems make ALL OF THE MONEY while everyone else who “sells more” makes bupkis.

post #22 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by rivie62 View Post

And so it begins... feels like the Apple of old...

...

As a Mac developer turned to Windows by sheer force of dollars 15 years ago, it is happening again. The commodity hardware will win. It has to. Apple better find something new to market or it's stock will start to drop like a rock.

Win what, exactly?

Sure they'll win the contest of shipping the most units... but that's not exactly a great goal. It's more of a false crown.

And who are we talking about anyway? A dozen companies selling commodity hardware... while only the biggest few actually making any money. That doesn't sound good either.

You're right... this is like the Apple of old. Remember when Apple was doomed because they didn't sell as many Macs compared to all the companies selling Windows computers?

And what happened? All those companies started dropping prices and were forced to sell cheap hardware... and then there wasn't any money to be made in PCs anymore.

Remember when HP and Dell were thinking about getting out of the PC business because there was no money in it? That's commodity hardware.

So yeah... your commodity theory might happen in the mobile market too. But just like Apple and the Mac against all the cheap PCs... Apple will stay afloat.

And by stay afloat I mean be wildly successful and profitable.

BTW.... being a "commodity" isn't exactly a good thing. It means you're selling the same stuff everyone else is selling. Isn't that why most of the PC companies and Android manufacturers are in a funk right now?

Ask anyone who's not Samsung how great it is to be one of a dozen manufacturers all selling a product called "Android Phone"

Commodity ain't all it's cracked up to be.
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