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Less than .01% of mobile apps will be considered successful by 2018

Posted: , by Alan F.

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Less than .01% of mobile apps will be considered successful by 2018
Don't quit your day job. That is the rule of thumb that we would suggest to developers who think that they might be able to make a living writing mobile apps. According to research firm Gartner, off all paid apps, 90% are downloaded less than 500 times a day,which works out to less than $1250 a day in revenue on average. Gartner analyst Ken Delaney says that most mobile apps are not in the black and are used for product recognition or just for fun.

Gartner also pointed out that there are about 200 companies writing mobile app programs with millions of developers writing apps as well. And yes, smartphone users are eating them up. Earlier Monday, we showed you a chart from Flurry which showed that downloads of mobile apps were up 115% in 2013. Last week, Apple said that its customers spent more than $10 billion on apps last year, including $1 billion just in December. Since 2008, developers of mobile apps for iOS have banked $15 billion. Developers get to keep 70 cents of each dollar with Apple receiving the rest.

Delaney figures that by 2016, 94.5% of available mobile apps will be free. And the high quality of these apps has set a pretty high bar for developers hoping to earn a living as a code jockey. But by 2018, Gartner says that of these developers, they will consider only .01% of mobile apps to be a success by 2018. Those are not good odds for a successful career.

source: Forbes

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posted on 13 Jan 2014, 18:42 4

1. rodneyej1 (Posts: 3556; Member since: 06 Jul 2013)


Exactly.. All these apps are just a temporary fad, and everything eventually will go back to the browser.. HTML 5 based apps are instantly multi platform, and will be available to all... That's why people sound dumb for taunting other platforms for having less apps.. Who cares..

posted on 13 Jan 2014, 19:02 1

2. Commentator (Posts: 2433; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)


“'This is only going to get worse in the future when there will be even greater competition, especially in successful markets.'" -The original Forbes article

I'm not trying to refute the general idea of what you said - I think switching to HTML 5 has its obvious benefits - but the article seems to imply the exact opposite will happen: the market will be saturated by apps that are there for marketing purposes, rather than as standalone functions. It's saying you can't get rich by being an app-developer alone.

Also, "successful markets" would seem to imply that having a large app catalog is more important than ever...

posted on 13 Jan 2014, 19:44 1

4. rodneyej1 (Posts: 3556; Member since: 06 Jul 2013)


Well, then I guess I'm questioning the relevance of the article.. I mean, this is PA.. Not the most reliable perspective around.. I'm smart enough to form my own, I guess..

posted on 13 Jan 2014, 19:57 1

5. Commentator (Posts: 2433; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)


They could have made it a bit clearer. It's not the coders who will have to worry, they'll always get paid. It's the entrepreneur who wants to make a quick buck in the app-business.

As for apps merely being a "fad," that's hard to prove when the most recent data shows downloads to be up 115% over the previous year, but that's only one statistic after all.

posted on 13 Jan 2014, 20:31

6. rodneyej1 (Posts: 3556; Member since: 06 Jul 2013)


You're right.. It's not fair at all for me to call them a fad, rather I should say that the current way of doing things is probably going to change before the end of the decade.. Pure speculation on my part though, but it's something to think about.

posted on 13 Jan 2014, 19:44 1

3. rawbow (Posts: 428; Member since: 30 Mar 2012)


I would rather have my existing apps updated to its full potential and more.

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