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A look at how iPhone developers are pricing their apps so far

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Though Apple's App Store is just one day young, one firm has performed an analysis on the inaugural batch of 552 iPhone and iPod touch apps to see how developers are pricing their mobile applications thus far.

When the App Store launched earlier this morning, 427 of those applications were pay-to-download apps and the remaining 135 were free, according to PinchMedia -- a small firm that aims to support iPhone developers by contributing free analytical tools.

Paid applications ranged in price from $0.99 to $69.99, with the most common price points being $0.99 (85 applications), $9.99 (82 applications), and $4.99 (62 applications), as can be seen in the graph below.

Six months from now, that graph may look entirely different, potentially skewing towards the other emerging price points seen further down the X axis: $14.99, $19.99, and $29.99.

By that time, Apple's iPhone SDK would have been in the hands of developers for 10 months, as opposed to just 4. As the App Store matures, so will the quality of the applications that it serves up.

The applications available today are a result of only a few months work, while many of those coming further down the line are expected to be more feature rich. They'll have consumed more time, more resources, and are therefore likely to fetch higher prices in return.



While the most expensive application on the App Store this morning was priced at $69.99, AppleInsider's behind-the-scenes look (redacted at the demand of Apple Legal) at the store prior to its launch revealed an internal pricing matrix that scaled up to $1000.

The higher developers price their applications, the more money Apple rakes in from its 30 percent cut of sales revenues. There's also unlikely to be any fire sales on the new download service. According to an article at The Standard, the iPhone maker is refusing to allow developers to offer discount incentives on their applications.
post #2 of 13
I think we will see some changes in pricing soon. Many apps are available for free with other similar ones which are not free. I also noticed that some apps are over priced.
post #3 of 13
Hello? Anyone here?
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2011 13" 2.3 MBP, 2006 15" 2.16 MBP, iPhone 4, iPod Shuffle, AEBS, AppleTV2 with XBMC.
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post #4 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by NasserAE View Post

I think we will see some changes in pricing soon. Many apps are available for free with other similar ones which are not free. I also noticed that some apps are over priced.

I agree.
There are some really good apps for free or next to nothing and similar versions that cost way too much.
There are also rubbish apps that I wouldn't pay for but would try if it was free!
e.g. there are at least 3 flash light apps, one of which is free, another is $3 !
post #5 of 13
Null.
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Þ & þ are called "Thorn" & þey represent þe sound you've associated "th" wiþ since þe 13þ or 14þ century. I'm bringing it back.
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post #6 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The higher developers price their applications, the more money Apple rakes in from its 30 percent cut of sales revenues.

???

Does the AI writer not understand simple economics?

They could say, "The higher developers price their applications, the more money Apple rakes in from its 30 percent cut of sales revenues per sale," but the above sentence is simply false. I bet Apple will rake in much more from every single one of the $0.99 apps than they will from that $69.99 app.
post #7 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by SiMac View Post

I agree.
There are some really good apps for free or next to nothing and similar versions that cost way too much.
There are also rubbish apps that I wouldn't pay for but would try if it was free!
e.g. there are at least 3 flash light apps, one of which is free, another is $3 !

Without reviews from actual users, it's tough to tell if the cheap/free ones are necessarily as good.

I haven't heard about any advance look on the developer's part to see what the competition will be while setting a price.
post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

Without reviews from actual users, it's tough to tell if the cheap/free ones are necessarily as good.

I haven't heard about any advance look on the developer's part to see what the competition will be while setting a price.

I think you are right. From a comment in another thread, the developers have been working in a vacuum without any support/advice from Apple about how to price their apps.
I think some of the highly priced apps will be reduced in the coming weeks - when they compare their offering against the competition.

Once all of the apps have been through individual reviews and customer ratings we will be able to see which ones of each category are best.
I still don't see why there are 3 flashlight apps, with a couple being paid for!
post #9 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

Without reviews from actual users, it's tough to tell if the cheap/free ones are necessarily as good.

Necessarily as good as what? You can't assume the expensive apps are good just because they cost more. I think every Mac user is aware that many freeware and shareware developers are far more in tune with what users need than large corporations. I think any heavy widget user can attest to the value and quality of small freeware apps developed by clever programmers.
post #10 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by pixelcruncher View Post

Necessarily as good as what? You can't assume the expensive apps are good just because they cost more. I think every Mac user is aware that many freeware and shareware developers are far more in tune with what users need than large corporations. I think any heavy widget user can attest to the value and quality of small freeware apps developed by clever programmers.

OK, point taken, I didn't mean that, no, I don't assume that higher price always means better, but it can. But just because some apps cost more than other apps that does similar things doesn't mean that they are necessarily ripoffs either. My main point was that we'll have to wait for things to settle out to see where the value ranking really is.
post #11 of 13
I've perused through some of the apps, and I must say that just because Apple provides an SDK with good interface components doesn't mean developers should get away with some of this crap. The iLingo phrase book preview images look terrible. I've tinkered in the SDK. If they just hooked up a database and put it into table views, they hardly did much to make a quality application. It's ridiculous. I just think some of the stuff could have been done better, especially for the prices they are asking.
post #12 of 13
It makes me really sad that with as few developers as they let into the program that it seems like 10% of the appstore is either Tip Calculators, Flash Lights or Shopping lists...
post #13 of 13
I've downloaded a few apps so far. I've really wanted a good to-do list and I hopped Apple would create one or at least work on calendar so it can act more like a to-do list. Of course that didn't happen, so I downloaded two different ones from the app store. So far I don't like any of seen or tried. Nothing really takes advantage of the iPhone's unique features. All I really want to do is make a list of tasks, current or future, and link them to a date if needed and also remind me to do them. Now it is possible that some of the more expansive ones can do that but so far that isn't easy to ascertain without more reviews. The biggest issue I see is that none of the ones I'm interested in sync with iCal or Mail. I think you will see a quick turn over of applications over the next few months and I would guess things will come to resemble the Mac application market. A few big players (Google, AOL, and maybe Microsoft), some crap, and a few good applications that are sold as shareware. Games might become the one bright spot, but I honestly don't see having many applications on my phone. I only use three apps. on my computer that aren't from Apple or a big name company.
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