Blog Post

Apple's Leagues Ahead In App Downloads: 18 Billion To Android's 10 Billion

A timely news announcement from Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) one week after Google’s own Android apps milestone: Apple says that 500,000 apps have now been published in the App Store, and it has had downloads of 18 billion across the store since it launched three years ago. Google (NSDQ: GOOG) last week noted that the Android Market had reached 10 billion downloads.

Apps for iOS devices, which include the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad tablet, are now being downloaded in the App Store at a rate of over one billion every month, according to the company.

Today it also gave an update on its newer App Store for Mac computers, and it’s a significantly smaller number and download rate: 100 million “apps” and software downloaded in less than a year, with no specific figure given for the total number of apps, except mention of “thousands” of free and paid apps.

The Mac App store was launched in January last year, so dividing 100 million by eleven months gives an average download rate of just over 9 million downloads per month. That points to how Mac apps might just be a slightly harder sell for the company, which solved a big problem for mobile content when it first launched its app store in 2008.

Given that HP (NYSE: HPQ) is bracing itself for Apple to overtake it in 2012 as the world’s biggest PC maker, that number may well tip going forward, if Apple chooses to make its Mac App Store into the most immediate forum for distributing software for its computers.

At the moment, all App Stores follow the same business model, in which Apple gets a 30 percent stake of all downloads and in-app purchases, while the developer/publisher of the app gets 70 percent. That includes hosting and credit card fees, as well as “marketing” for the app, says Apple.

Last week, Google reported that Android had reached 10 billion app downloads in its first 18 months of operation, with gaming apps accounting for the largest share of those downloads. Android had around 320,000 active applications in the Market as of October 2011.

By one estimate, from analytics firm Mobilewalla (via NY Times), the total number of apps across major app stores (that would also include, for example, the App World from BlackBerry) is now passing one million.

Given how prevalent third-party app stores are on the Android platform, particularly in countries like China but also elsewhere, that’s a remarkable achievement and will probably only grow as Android continues growth as the world’s largest smartphone platform.

6 Responses to “Apple's Leagues Ahead In App Downloads: 18 Billion To Android's 10 Billion”

  1. TheCrapMan

    Not really sure that comparing 10 bil to 18 bil is leagues, which should be more than almost double. The Apple App Store was also opened first so they had a head start.

    In the end, its just a number let out by marketing companies, so not sure how accurate either number is especially since Apples numbers were a response to Googles announcement.

    • But then, what is Android but a ‘response’ to iPhone in the first place?  Everything about it (except the notifications) is a page from the iPhone book, right down to the android market.   The difference being the ease of use and the fact that Android is wide open to malware.

      On iPhone, the App store was not added until July 2008.    How long did it take Google to copy the concept (of course, being more ‘open’ to spyware and adware, which is really the purpose of Android.)

      Not long, the rip-off Android MarketPlace opened in AUGUST 2008.

      So, Apple has been open ONE MONTH longer to get it’s extra 8 BILLION downloads (and a whole lot more useful apps which have all been checked for malware).


      • Jefferson RFO

        Well, okay, sure, that’s all true. But re the 18 billion to 10 billion, so many of the Android market’s apps have viruses, spyware and other nefarious stuff hidden in them that Android’s 10 billion is really more like, I dunno, 30 billion! I mean, when you get an iPhone app, you know what you’re getting; what’s the fun in that? Using an Android app, you get that standing-on-the-edge-of-a-cliff-wearing-rollerskates-on-a-windy-day kind of excitement! So isn’t it way better to go with Android apps and have no idea what you really might end up with? I ask you!

  2. ——  A timely news announcement from Apple ———
    you misinterpreted a marketing departments ad,   with a “news” announcement…  Apple had 500,000 apps in october when Tim Cook announced it during earnings call…   along with the 18 billion downloads…

    the marketing department is just using his numbers to come up with an ad…   Apple has far more than 500,000 apps now…  and a few more billions of downloads….

  3. “Apple gets a 70 percent stake of all downloads and in-app purchases, while the developer/publisher of the app gets 30 percent”
    I believe this is backwards? It’s publisher 70% and Apple 30%;
    “Mac developers set the prices for their apps, keep 70 percent of the sales revenue, are not charged for free apps and do not have to pay hosting, marketing or credit card fees” (from Apple’s press announcement)