New research shows we prefer ‘freemium’ apps, 98% of Play Store revenue comes from them

December 30, 2013
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Free, fremium, or paid? That’s one of the many decisions facing Developers of mobile apps, but recent research may help with the decision making process. If analytics firm Distimo is correct, we’re more apt to make purchases in-app rather than upfront.


The research shows that a massive 98% of revenue in the Play Store was from freemium apps, with the other two percent shared equally between paid apps and paid apps with in-app purchases (paid-paid? Annoying). Their research also shows that we’ll spend in-app on games more than any other category, with 90% of the revenue coming from the freemium model. A respectable 8% comes from straight-up paid apps, while 2% comes from the pesky paid-paid variety.

It’s also worth noting that these figures are worldwide, and the country-by-country breakouts are equally impressive. Emerging markets in Asia lead the way, with South Korea seeing a 759% uptick in revenue. This leads to many of the top grossing apps in the report being ones we’ve not heard of stateside, Especially as you consider China and Japan are second and third with 280% and 245% growth, respectively. Rounding out the top five growth markets are Russia and Germany, with 125% and 90% bumps. The United States sits in seventh place with 81% growth, lagging France with 89%.

Distimo country breakdown

The cross-platform bridge is closing as well, with Apple once commanding about 70% of the revenue via their App Store. Now, Google grabs about 37% of the pie, leaving Apple to 63%. That change occurred between June and November of 2013, when the two studies were done. Of course, when considering scale, those numbers don’t affect Apple or Google negatively, regardless of spread.

If you’re wondering what the Play Store makes in a day, Distimo estimates $12 million to be about right. A year ago, in November 2012, Distimo estimated Google to bring in about $3.5 million daily from the Play Store. As for Apple, they held steady, with $18 million per day this year, and $15 million every day last year.


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  • digi_owl

    Meaning that it is easier to get multiple small sums off people, than single large ones. Something i think companies like mobile carriers know all about…

  • LoveACbutYouGuysNeedAnEditor

    Free, fremium, or paid? = Free, freemium, or paid?