How The Most Successful Apps Make Money Globally?, a website which provides an analytical platform for app developers in order to present the most accurate market data globally published a report on 22nd February, 2014 which shows how the most profitable apps earn revenue.

Apps Make Money

How Did Distimo Conduct The Research?
Distimo joined forces with Chartboost, a technology platform which helps mobile game developers find new users, in order to conduct the research.

Distimo and Chartboost analysed the data, which comprised of a combination of the revenue share from in-app purchases (IAP) over time and the average revenue per download (ARPD) breakdowns for top apps by country, business models, and device type.

By comparing the ARPD values with the average cost per install (CPI) data, awareness into the revenue potential for mobile games in different market was made possible.

Distimo also conducted this research from January, 2012 to January, 2014 and focuses on data that has been gleaned from Apple’s App Store.

What Were The Findings Of The Research?
The revenue share from free apps with in-app purchases (known colloquially as “freemium apps”) usually tends to drop in the months of December, falling to 60% from somewhere in the early sixties in November 2012, and to 78% from 80% in November, 2013.

The data therefore seems to imply that in the month of December, right the time around when Christmas celebrations are about to start, people are more likely to buy paid-apps.

One of the other findings of the study show that freemium apps earned the highest revenue and that revenue share is steadily increasing, thanks in no small part to huge successes like Finnish game studio Supercell, which earned $892 million from their games like “Hay Day” and “Clash of Clans” in 2013, and King, the based-in-Ireland but actually Swedish in origin game studio earned $1.88 billion in 2013 thanks to it’s freemium game “Candy Crush Saga.”

When it comes to providing a detailed overview of the profitability and revenue potential in different mobile app markets in the gaming sector, Distimo supplemented their own analysis of average revenues per download with some of Chartboost’s data on the average cost per install (CPI) while focusing on mobile games.

Chartboost provides a global CPI “heat map” (graphical representation of data using colors instead of numbers) for iOS and Android among other platforms, and by comparing the ARPD with the average CPI data on iOS for the fourth quarter in 2013, the five markets most profitable markets were Japan, Australia, South Korea, United Kingdom, and the United States.

While we have always stated the importance of freemium apps ourselves and stressed on how freemium apps are actually the right revenue earning model in the Android ecosystem, the report by Distimo brings more light on how much freemium games can actually earn.


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