Apple(s aapl) doesn’t have a presence at the Consumer Electronics Show, but that hasn’t stopped it from putting out a press release to steal some industry thunder. On Tuesday, the Cupertino-based company announced that the App Store had its best year ever in 2013, with over $10 billion in sales.
The strong year was pushed over the top in December, when users downloaded nearly three billion apps, accounting for over $1 billion in sales. Apple pointed out a few obvious hits, like Candy Crush Saga and Minecraft. It also called attention to surprise sensations like the Ellen DeGeneres-backed Heads Up (which I alone spent a great deal of money on in the month of December). Apps from international developers had a strong year as well, with developers like Simogo from Sweden and Frogmind in the UK shouted out.
Increased app downloads and sales aren’t much of a surprise, given the steadily increasing amount of devices out there. As more and more people get iPhones, iPads and iPod touches, the more people have access to Apple’s App Store. But it’s interesting to learn just how much people are willing to spend money on apps, as opposed to just sticking with the freebies.
Apple also announced that, to date, developers have earned $15 billion in profits from the App Store.