Many app developers have long bet their futures on creating the next Snapchat or Candy Crush, and only farmed out their work to others as a last resort. Turns out the smart development shops have seen the writing on the app store wall and chosen to reverse this order. With only 11% of all apps actually being paid for, and in-app purchases and advertising providing paltry amounts of revenue, the jig is up for many in the app economy. But as more and more firms refuse to read the writing on the wall and rush into app development, experienced and talented firms are finding the most money is to be made by building apps for these new firms and entrants. App developers have figured out if you want to make money in the app game don’t sell to consumers, sell to other businesses that want an app.
This data, and the following chart, come from a recent report by VisionMobile. This London-based research firm looked specifically at 6,000 developers in 115 countries and put into numbers just how much the developers earn. Taken together, app stores sales and advertising together count for less than a quarter of all revenues for developers. VisionMobile senior analyst Andreas Pappas says this the most exhaustive study of its kind, and the results clearly show that app store dynamics are not as rosy as they appear on the surface. Like all goldrushes, the only people making money in the app economy are the suppliers.
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