In a world ruled by smartphones, what would a frugal consumer want most? Aside from free phones, I guess the next best thing would to have access to lots of free apps. And surprise surprise! Android leads all the major smartphone App stores in the availability of free apps. An analysis performed by Distimo in June found that 57% of the apps on the Android Market are free, compared to 28% for the iPhone App Store and 22% for the Windows Mobile Marketplace. Distimo also studied the average price per paid app, and found that Android provided the cheapest paid apps of the major smartphone platforms. The average app on Android is $3.29, compared to $4.01 for the Apple App Store, $6.97 for Blackberry, and $5.96 for the Windows Marketplace.
These figures are stunning, and may or may not bode well for developers looking to make the move to Android. Having the lowest-price apps, and the most free apps available could mean that Android developers recognize the frugality of the Android consumer, especially in a down economy. So, instead of charging for apps, developers look to other options: one being the implementation of AdSense within their free apps to yield profit. Distimo's analysis may also show the impact of piracy on the Android Market. Some developers may feel that piracy is a war they will never be able to win, so instead of fighting, they just simply provide their apps at an inexpensive price point, or free of charge. Although this may seem like an extreme viewpoint, one cannot deny the ease of piracy and the wide availability of pirated apps for Android.
Any way you slice it, Android is the best smartphone platform for consumers looking for the most bang for their buck. These findings are almost verbatim to what was found in Distimo's February analysis. As the Android Market continues to grow, as does its selection of free apps.
A few more interesting findings (via Androinica):
- 32% of Android apps cost $0.99 or less
- 31% cost $1-$2
- 37% cost more than $2
- The highest-ranked paid app, based on Distimo’s findings, is Beautiful Widgets by Level Up Studio ($1.88 USD). Dataviz’s DocsToGo is the most expensive app in the Top 10 ($14.99), but it has had several sales that lessened the price to $5.55-$9.99.
- Robo Defense is the most popular paid game ($2.99)
Thoughts on these findings?