Android apps "too expensive," cost more than double those on iOS

Android apps
Android apps are too expensive, a study by Canalys concluded. The researcher looked at apps on the Android Market and found that in general they cost 2.5 times those on the more mature iOS where fierce competition drives prices down.

Shocked? So are we, but the facts set the record straight - Canalys took the top 100 apps on both app markets and compared the total cost. On the Android Market the top 100 applications will set you back $374.37, or an average of $3.74 per app, while on the App Store you can get the top 100 apps for $147, or a measly $1.47 apiece. That means Android apps are nearly 2.5 times more expensive in the light of the picked apps.

Canalys reasons that there are two main reasons behind this:

1. Apple has a more mature, more competitive environment, forcing developers to lower the prices of their creations.

2. Android users aren’t that prone to spending money on apps. Thus, developers are trying to reap the most of what customers are already buying.

We could also add another speculation by saying that in general Android users are considered geekier, more of power users, so they are willing to pay more for more advanced apps.

Interestingly, the top 100 titles on both markets differ hugely - there are only 19 repeating titles. Most common bestsellers like Where’s My Water (currently holding the number one spot on both App Stores), Cut the Rope and Fruit Ninja are priced equally, but other titles like Monopoly cost five times more on the Android Market. 

Feel free to dive in the links below and make the comparison yourself, and let us know your thoughts whether that conclusion is valid for the whole of the Android Market and the App Store.

source: Canalys via BGR



1. ilia1986 unregistered

So.. you take 2 groups, both with less than 20% common observations on both sides, and you find that Group A has on average 2.5x the price of the average price of Group B? Any person who studied basic econometrics will say to you outright that such a research is complete bulls**t. You essentially can't compare the two groups if only 19% of the obs are common among them. A proper study - which isn't really hard - would be to take 100 apps on Android, and THE SAME 100 apps on iOS - and then compare the prices between the two.

3. godspeed

Posts: 4; Member since: Dec 22, 2011

first of all, calling this a study is hilarious. How can they even not compare the same apps?? what were they thinking? This is so completly useless. Dear Canalys, wanna know some? 80% oft the top 100 IPhone sell apps are free on Android market. Now go and include that into your brainless "study"

8. protozeloz

Posts: 5396; Member since: Sep 16, 2010

Indeed many paid iOS apps on top are free on they Android market

20. squallz506

Posts: 1075; Member since: Oct 19, 2011

my favorite ios paid android free apps- every angry birds title i find this especially hilarious considering all of the angry birds apps made top 100 in the app store.

4. SlimSoulja86

Posts: 660; Member since: Nov 03, 2011

i agree with you!

24. Synack

Posts: 688; Member since: Jul 05, 2011

Android Market = better The vast majority of the important apps are free. The paid apps are few and far inbetween and that being said, they are also the most outrageously awesome apps that people are willing to pay a good price for. I'm not going to go to the Top 100 right now but I guarantee you there are apps that are $10, $20, and up. But that is because the amazing service they offer. Such apps allow Android users to do things that iPhoners cannot do. Which we all know leads up to this: An"Droid Does", iPhone doesn't.

41. gallitoking

Posts: 4721; Member since: May 17, 2011

you clearly have not have gone window shopping on the Android Market right?...

43. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

and neither have you

14. bloodline

Posts: 706; Member since: Dec 01, 2011

This guy knows what his talking and to be honest phones arena shouldnt even have this on the site. Vote- phone arena to remove this bs post !!!!

40. gallitoking

Posts: 4721; Member since: May 17, 2011

since the beginning iOs is different than Android.. and comparison have been going on.. why stop now... because it doesnt favor Android.. please.. is Friday... you can do better

49. protozeloz

Posts: 5396; Member since: Sep 16, 2010

I don't think it does not favor android at all just toll a different title and wazam! you get an pro android atricle for example "android devs make more money per download than their iOS counterpart"

53. 14545

Posts: 1835; Member since: Nov 22, 2011

I have to agree, but not just because of what you said. but also the fact that most of the apps that are on the market are not on the app store. For example, torque, an OBDII reader app, isn't on the app store and the only equivalents are like 50-100 dollars, Vs. the 5 I paid for torque pro. That's not to say that there isn't apps that are more expensive on the market, vs the app store, but this study seems really bias.

2. WinC76 unregistered

Still cheaper than most of the paid apps on Windows Phone.

6. protozeloz

Posts: 5396; Member since: Sep 16, 2010


16. Luuthian

Posts: 332; Member since: Sep 09, 2011

So true... Especially the games. Nothing like paying 3-4x as much for an iOS game that's 2 or more years old.

25. Victor.H

Posts: 1079; Member since: May 27, 2011

That, sir, was my first thought when I read Canalys' report.

5. protozeloz

Posts: 5396; Member since: Sep 16, 2010

Sorry but I'll put this one with a pound of doubt. That's the dumbest way to check something like that, the top 100 don't measure a thing because top 100's are completely different. While app store has games and social stuff on the top ten Android has titanium backup among other tools Also apps like whatsapp are free on the market while they cost money on the app store

7. DIYguy

Posts: 190; Member since: Feb 27, 2011

Wp marketplace is extremely expensive... angrybirds is like 2.99€ and assassin's creed 4,99€! But there is a "try" option usually.

9. RaKithAPeiRiZ

Posts: 1488; Member since: Dec 29, 2011

people rarely buy from the android market ....others use blackmarket apps

10. protozeloz

Posts: 5396; Member since: Sep 16, 2010

I personally use the Android market no worries and apps stay linked to my account even if I buy a new phone

46. taz89

Posts: 2014; Member since: May 03, 2011

you can say the same about apple...people who jailbreak probably use installous for pirated apps....

11. andro.

Posts: 1999; Member since: Sep 16, 2011

A ridiculous study no doubt produced by pro apple supporters. How about the simply most popular of all apps Angry birds being free android but not ios?! Ive have notice Victor H has been posting very pro apple and subtle anti android articles recently

12. ilia1986 unregistered

I've noticed that too.. Aren't writers and reporters are supposed to be in favor of freedom and against oppression?

42. gallitoking

Posts: 4721; Member since: May 17, 2011

thats is a cheap shot against a writer that doesnt write in your favor illia,.... freedom and oppresion?.. lol. good one... is nice to see yo u have a sense of humor...

19. bucky

Posts: 3791; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

look at it how u want. Its a simple study with very few variables but it makes sense. Take the most post popular apps from both sides, add the total price. It is what it is. Take it easy, no "pro Apple" claims needed! lol If i wanted to start somewhere i would do it like that

21. ilia1986 unregistered

All that means is the generally speaking - Android users spend more money on more expensive apps. It DOES NOT MEAN that Android apps are too expensive and\or cost more than double those on iOS, like the article suggested it does. If I have 10 pancakes, and I sell 1 of them - chocolate flavored - for 10$, and I sell the other 9 - potato flavored for 5$ - and you have 10 pancakes and sell all of them - potato flavored - for 5$ - does that mean that my pancakes are too expensive and\or cost double the price of yours? NO! It just means - assuming we both sell out completely - that my customers are willing to pay more money over DIFFERENT more expensive products. That's all it means. It's that simple.

23. bucky

Posts: 3791; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

again, over complicating and adding too many variables. Its a SIMPLE gauge. Saying android apps are more expensive isnt correct, i agree, however the top 100 apps are more expensive.

29. protozeloz

Posts: 5396; Member since: Sep 16, 2010

I can agree, to me in some way we could say that top 100 apps get more money in average compared with the top 100 on the app store. its not a measure of how expensive the stores are but I can say that in average the dev in the top 100 is making more money per download compared with the app store

27. Victor.H

Posts: 1079; Member since: May 27, 2011

I find those comments about my pro-Apple writing amusing, but let me make this clear - Android apps being too expensive is Canalys' conclusion that I report on and I find this conclusion legit in the light of the apps they've sampled. I think what Canalys has done is an interesting and easy way to compare the two app catalogs. At the same time, I don't find the method they've used adequate to draw general conclusions about the two markets, and I haven't anywhere said I agree with this method. Hope that makes it clear.

28. ilia1986 unregistered

How can you say that you find their conclusion legit, and at the same time claim that you don't find the method which they used as adequate to draw general conclusions? Bit of contradicting yourself, isn't it? And bucky - as I said - it just shows that the top 100 on Android is more expensive. Yes. That said - these are DIFFERENT APPS on their vast majority. also lol at your statement saying that I over complicate things. The more complicated a statistical analysis is - the more accurate it is. If you can't handle this basic assumption - well - too bad for you. Oh, and Victor - it troubles me that you find those comments about your pro-Apple writing as amusing - because I find your pro-Apple writing as troubling in fact. I can bring you at least one example: In the "How to turn your smartphone into a PC" Article, your default choice for a wireless keyboard\mouse was Apple hardware. I can find the exact quote, if you like.

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