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Report: Only 25 Developers Generate Half of All Mobile App Revenue

A new report reveals how concentrated the mobile app landscape has become.
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Think your mobile app start-up has what it takes to become the next Zynga or Rovio?

The path may be harder than it looks. Only 25 developers account for half of all mobile app revenue in Google’s Play marketplace and Apple’s App Store, according to a new study by business analysis firm Canalys.

Using data from the first 20 days of November, Canalys found that the 25 top-grossing developers generated $60 million from paid-for downloads and in-app purchases. All but one of the 25 developers were mobile gaming companies; the lone exception being Internet radio service Pandora.

Over the same period, games accounted for 145 of the top 300 paid apps in the Apple App Store and 116 of the top paid apps in Google Play.

“With top game developers’ content so prevalent in the stores, it can be hard for other good quality apps to get the attention they deserve,” said Canalys senior analyst Tim Shepherd in a statement. “Developers of other kinds of apps need to consider how to promote them.”

So how do non-gaming mobile app developers boost their brand awareness? Shepherd said that developers should consider a variety of marketing strategies including “social recommendations, tactical sales promotion and discounts, branding tie-ups and targeted in-app advertising.”

IMAGE: Getty
Last updated: Dec 6, 2012

MATTHEW WONG | Staff Writer

Matthew Wong is a digital journalist whose work has also appeared in Dow Jones VentureWire and The Wall Street Journal.




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