Commentary

Apple Still Reaping Rich Returns From App Biz

Talk about a rich ecosystem.

Since launching its App Store in 2008, Apple says it has paid out more than $70 billion to developers.

Considering its 70/30 revenue split with developers, that means the tech giant has made around $30 billion from its app business to date.

More impressive still, that business appears to be healthier than ever. Indeed, Apple says the App Store saw downloads increase by more than 70% over the past year.

“Our customers are downloading [apps] in record numbers,” Philip Schiller, Apple’s SVP of worldwide marketing, stated.

Much of the credit should go to developers themselves, according to Schiller. From Pokémon GO to Super Mario Run, “We are amazed at all of the great new apps our developers create,” he said.

As for Apple’s role in the app business, Schiller said the release of iOS 10 last fall has helped create new opportunities -- from giving a friend a Starbucks gift card using Apple Pay to collaborating on a fashion design sketch using Prêt à Template.

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Additionally, active paid subscriptions are up 58% year-over-year, which Schiller attributes to the fact that the App Store’s subscription model is now available to developers across all 25 app categories.

Not surprisingly, gaming and entertainment remain top-grossing categories, while lifestyle apps -- as well as health and fitness -- have experienced more than 70% growth in the past year.

Another hot category is photos and videos, which grew nearly 90% over the past year.

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