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Apple's App Store sees first month sales of $30 million

post #1 of 22
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Users of Apple's new App Store have downloaded more than 60 million programs, generating a total of about $30 million in sales since the service launched one month ago, according to Apple chief executive Steve Jobs.

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal published early Monday morning, Jobs revealed that while the majority of those applications were free, the App Store still raked in an average $1 million a day from pay-per-download programs -- or an estimated annual sales rate of $360 million.

"This thing's going to crest a half a billion, soon," he said. "Who knows, maybe it will be a $1 billion marketplace at some point in time. I've never seen anything like this in my career for software."

Still, Apple isn't looking at the App Store as a big money maker, but rather a tool to further differentiate its iPhone from the broader array of mobile phones on the market. As such, it keeps only 30 percent of App Store revenues to cover costs associated with the service, turning the remaining 70 percent over to the software makers themselves.

As such, developers' share of the first month revenues was about $21 million, of which the top 10 developers earned roughly $9 million, Jobs said.

Video game house Sega Corp. was among the biggest earners, having sold 300,000 copies of its $9.99 Super Monkeyball game in just 20 days, fueling revenues of nearly $3 million. Meanwhile, a free drug encyclopedia offered by Epocrates Inc. was downloaded by more than 125,000 people, including 25,000 doctors.

In speaking to the Journal Jobs also confirmed that his firm's iPhone software contains a backdoor that theoretically would allow the company to remotely deactivate software that had already been purchased and downloaded to users' iPhones.

Jobs said the capability exists only to protect users in case Apple inadvertently allowed a malicious program -- such as one that stole users' personal data -- to be distributed over the App Store.

"Hopefully we never have to pull that lever, but we would be irresponsible not to have a lever like that to pull," he said.
post #2 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Users of Apple's new App Store have downloaded more than 60 million programs, generating a total of about $30 million in sales ...

As such, developers' share of the first month revenues was about $21 million, of which the top 10 developers earned roughly $9 million, Jobs said.

An enabling technology for anyone displaying initiative and a desire to learn. Go get em!
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post #3 of 22
Pretty amazing!

Typo: "...in just $20 days..."

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post #4 of 22
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Originally Posted by IQatEdo View Post

An enabling technology for anyone displaying initiative and a desire to learn. Go get em!

That being said, it's not easy to be one of those top-10 developers. I have a $3 app out there that's unique, useful, and looks good, and I've gotten a "review" claiming I'm "expensive". Sigh. A lot of buyers seem to think that anything that's not free is "expensive". (That one reviewer also claims "buggy" despite the fact that no one I've talked to can reproduce it and no one's filed a single bug report at all yet.) It's frustrating.

My app's been up 1 full week now, and I've gotten about 100 downloads. Not terrible, especially without any advertising whatsoever. I seem to have settled on about 10 downloads a day, which pays for lunch but I'm not quitting my day job or anything.
post #5 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Booga View Post

That being said, it's not easy to be one of those top-10 developers. I have a $3 app out there that's unique, useful, and looks good, and I've gotten a "review" claiming I'm "expensive". Sigh. A lot of buyers seem to think that anything that's not free is "expensive". (That one reviewer also claims "buggy" despite the fact that no one I've talked to can reproduce it and no one's filed a single bug report at all yet.) It's frustrating.

My app's been up 1 full week now, and I've gotten about 100 downloads. Not terrible, especially without any advertising whatsoever. I seem to have settled on about 10 downloads a day, which pays for lunch but I'm not quitting my day job or anything.

I think just about everyone (developers and consumers) are really tired of 13 year olds commenting on every app they come across without even trying it. They base their "review" of the price, description, and screenshots. I think it's only a matter of time before Apple limits "reviews" to people who bought / downloaded the app first.
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post #6 of 22
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Originally Posted by Dogcow View Post

I think just about everyone (developers and consumers) are really tired of 13 year olds commenting on every app they come across without even trying it. They base their "review" of the price, description, and screenshots. I think it's only a matter of time before Apple limits "reviews" to people who bought / downloaded the app first.

I certainly hope so. It's grossly unfair to developers to have these sorts of reviews by kids who haven't even bought or downloaded the app. I went over the edge when I read one review that simply said, "FIRST!"

Give me a break.
post #7 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Booga View Post

That being said, it's not easy to be one of those top-10 developers. I have a $3 app out there that's unique, useful, and looks good, and I've gotten a "review" claiming I'm "expensive". Sigh. A lot of buyers seem to think that anything that's not free is "expensive". (That one reviewer also claims "buggy" despite the fact that no one I've talked to can reproduce it and no one's filed a single bug report at all yet.) It's frustrating.

My app's been up 1 full week now, and I've gotten about 100 downloads. Not terrible, especially without any advertising whatsoever. I seem to have settled on about 10 downloads a day, which pays for lunch but I'm not quitting my day job or anything.

The overlap of people who play timed/speed chess and people who own an iPhone (and see $2.99 as trivial) doesn't seem so large to me.
post #8 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Booga View Post

That being said, it's not easy to be one of those top-10 developers. I have a $3 app out there that's unique, useful, and looks good, and I've gotten a "review" claiming I'm "expensive". Sigh. A lot of buyers seem to think that anything that's not free is "expensive".

Indeed. I've even seen apps costing 99 cents reviewed as expensive. "Not worth 99 cents" I believe someone said, you have to wonder how much 99 cents is actually worth to these people. The "review comments open to all" model works well for iTunes music and movies because people may have valid opinions on stuff they haven't bought from iTunes, but for apps it makes no sense to accept reviews from users who haven't downloaded the software. If after paying for something, they don't think it was worth the price, then fair enough.
post #9 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by probably View Post

The overlap of people who play timed/speed chess and people who own an iPhone (and see $2.99 as trivial) doesn't seem so large to me.

Oh, admittedly. I certainly could have written another tip calculator and had a much bigger target audience. My point was simply that to get one of those "top 10" apps isn't trivial. Some strike on some super-sticky simple idea, but mostly it's a lot of work and in return you get people complaining that a few bucks is "too expensive".

I considered charging $10 for my app, figuring that it's still less than 1/2 the price of any other chess clock you can buy and people who want a chess clock might still buy it. I opted to go the $3 route hoping more casual chess players (or simply people who want to split time between two activities) might bite who otherwise wouldn't.

(I actually got the idea while sitting in a meeting in which the programmatic people and the technical people were vying for time and we were trying to split the time evenly. Not while playing chess.)
post #10 of 22
NOW is the time to bring more affordable MacBooks and iMacs ...

money is always coming to apple, time to increase the market share a bit,

Nov '09 | iMac 21.5" C2D 3.06 Ghz | Intel 330 240GB SSD | ATI

Sep '12| Toshiba 14" 1366 x 768! | i5 3rd Gen 6GB| Intel x25-m 120GB SSD | Win 7|  Viewsonic VX2255wmb 22" LCD
iPhone 4S| iPad 2 wifi

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Nov '09 | iMac 21.5" C2D 3.06 Ghz | Intel 330 240GB SSD | ATI

Sep '12| Toshiba 14" 1366 x 768! | i5 3rd Gen 6GB| Intel x25-m 120GB SSD | Win 7|  Viewsonic VX2255wmb 22" LCD
iPhone 4S| iPad 2 wifi

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post #11 of 22
People are cheap bastards; that's the simple truth.
post #12 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Booga View Post

That being said, it's not easy to be one of those top-10 developers. I have a $3 app out there that's unique, useful, and looks good, and I've gotten a "review" claiming I'm "expensive". Sigh. A lot of buyers seem to think that anything that's not free is "expensive". (That one reviewer also claims "buggy" despite the fact that no one I've talked to can reproduce it and no one's filed a single bug report at all yet.) It's frustrating.

My app's been up 1 full week now, and I've gotten about 100 downloads. Not terrible, especially without any advertising whatsoever. I seem to have settled on about 10 downloads a day, which pays for lunch but I'm not quitting my day job or anything.

Booga - thanks for the insight! Still, you've got an app up there which says something.

I'm hoping to get one up too but have other tasks to get on top of first.

All the best.
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post #13 of 22
I would have thought it would have been even more. Still, it's huge sales.
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of a rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #14 of 22
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Originally Posted by Galley View Post

People are cheap bastards; that's the simple truth.

Which ones? The ones complaining about prices, or developers intentionally putting out crapware to score quick bucks off people!

Not all developers are this way, but you have to admit there is a tremendous amount of junk on the AppStore.
post #15 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by kresh View Post

Which ones? The ones complaining about prices, or developers intentionally putting out crapware to score quick bucks off people!

Not all developers are this way, but you have to admit there is a tremendous amount of junk on the AppStore.

Agreed. Ignore them. It's really easy for that crap to die an obscure death. The alternative of treating the App Store reviews like a message board is very frustrating for the apps that only SEEM like junk to you but in reality are valuable but just not targeted for you.

I wish Apple would silently kill any review 1. that's less than a couple of sentences, 2. from people who haven't bought the software, or 3. contains the word "expensive".
post #16 of 22
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Originally Posted by Booga View Post

... or 3. contains the word "expensive".

'I Am Rich'
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post #17 of 22
Two quick comments. One is that it is amazing that while everyone on this board (and those gravitating the Apple universe) gets the "this is big" factor on App Store, I had dinner with a friend last night with a gen one iPhone who is not in tech, and who had "heard of" App Store but when I tried to show him an app or two on his phone, he couldn't remember his iTunes password to buy an app. This is just a way of saying that there are people who bought iPhone because it was cool but have no sense of apps and App Stores. As more apps role out, as a couple of breakout successes emerge and as Apple starts to market App Store, the concept of this as a marketplace will take hold, and the numbers could get scary big.

Two is that while I have seen some rants on kill switches as a bad thing, for me personally, governance is something I want Apple taking a proactive stand on. I don't want my phone, data mine and e-wallet being easily hacked into via rogue apps.

I blogged on this particular point in:

iPhone Universe: Network Borders, Kill Switches and The Core Location
http://thenetworkgarden.com/weblog/2...-universe.html

Check it out if interested.

Mark
post #18 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dogcow View Post

I think just about everyone (developers and consumers) are really tired of 13 year olds commenting on every app they come across without even trying it. They base their "review" of the price, description, and screenshots. I think it's only a matter of time before Apple limits "reviews" to people who bought / downloaded the app first.

The more proper way is to say that it is the adults behaving like 13-year-olds.
post #19 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Booga View Post

or 3. contains the word "expensive".

To be fair, some apps are genuinely overpriced.
post #20 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by dr_lha View Post

To be fair, some apps are genuinely overpriced.

A value proposition is a personal thing. A reviewer can go over the apps usage and provide additional context, but can't tell you whether something is worth it for you. If everyone thought the app was appropriately priced, it means the seller should probably have charged more.

And no app below $5 is "too expensive" in a world where 30 second midi ringtones or static background images sell for a dollar or two on other providers. Just going through Apple's application form, code signing process, specific submission process, etc., is worth at least a dollar in and of itself .
post #21 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Booga View Post

And no app below $5 is "too expensive" in a world where 30 second midi ringtones or static background images sell for a dollar or two on other providers. Just going through Apple's application form, code signing process, specific submission process, etc., is worth at least a dollar in and of itself .

It's all relative. People will spend several dollars a month to rent ring-tones but then steal music. The App Store will have the effect of lowering the cost of mobile apps across the board while increasing their popularity and quality yet we're still going to here about how expensive they are.
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post #22 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dogcow View Post

I think just about everyone (developers and consumers) are really tired of 13 year olds commenting on every app they come across without even trying it. They base their "review" of the price, description, and screenshots. I think it's only a matter of time before Apple limits "reviews" to people who bought / downloaded the app first.

As most apps aren't available elsewhere, I would agree. It seems there should be some moderation on the music store too. If the "Discovery Download" isn't free due to a glitch or a delay, there will be complaints that it's not free when it should be, with one star ratings on that complaint, when the rating should be about the music and not some store error.


Quote:
Originally Posted by dr_lha View Post

To be fair, some apps are genuinely overpriced.

I wish people would apandon the term "overpriced". The word always seemed off to me.
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