Top 25 Developers Earn 50% Of App Revenue

Top-Grossing-Apps-BTalk about your "top 1%." According to analyst Canalys, half of all app revenue generated by both Apple iOS and Google Android in the first 20 days of November went to only 25 developers, virtually all game makers. Companies such as Zynga, Electronic Arts, Disney, Kabam, Rovio, Glu, Gameloft and TeamLava all were atop the list of big earners in this list of 25 developers who among them generated $60 million in estimated direct paid and in-app purchase revenue in 20 days. Canalys used its App Interrogator online analytics tool to survey app sales activity worldwide.

The top revenue earners are dominated by games publishers, and in fact only Internet radio provider Pandora is among the top 25.

The recipe for success among these big money makers in apps is having a portfolio of offerings, says Canalys VP and Principal Analyst Chris Jones. “Part of the story here is that successful game developers almost invariably have multiple titles generating revenue,” he says. Zynga, for instance, has 15 titles among the top 300-grossing iPhone games and nine in Google Play. Even Rovio's major franchise Angry Birds has multiple variants.



Canalys says that the dominance of these game makers in the two major app stores presents greater challenges to non-gaming apps. Discoverability is tougher when nearly half of the top 300 paid apps in iOS and 116 in Google Play are games.  

1 comment about "Top 25 Developers Earn 50% Of App Revenue".
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  1. Stefan Rust from Exicon, December 5, 2012 at 9:08 a.m.

    This is a very myopic view, as it is the game developers that are really looking to monetize their applications through
    - pay per download
    - freemium channel
    - micropayments
    - in-app purchases
    - advertising

    In contrast there are a number of applications categories that aren't only measured on revenue, but more on engagement.

    Social media applications don't monetize their applications in the same way, yet drive significant customer engagement.

    The same would apply to loyalty applications from various corporations. If you have a United Airlines app, the purpose of that application is to drive transactions of an airline ticket, using points to upgrade, or....etc etc

    All of these category of applications are also built by developers who also get paid, just in a different form and not necessarily by apple or google.

    Another area that is interesting is in in app advertising? How much of that revenue is passed through? That is not always accounted for through the apple of google channel. Admittedly Quattro (Apple ad network) and Admob (google ad network) are one of the biggest categories, but don't think that is included in the revenue numbers mentioned above.

    Developers have multiple ways to earn money when developing for mobile. there are some 500K jobs created thanks to the app economy, there are just multiple means that developers can get paid for their creativity and skills in a mobile world....

    (How about OS, firmware work, analytics, data services on top of it....)

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