Staggering? – Most definitely. Launched on July 10, 2008, the App Store has become a wealth of information. Starting out with just a few hundred applications, the store is now home to over 300,000 apps, with (as of writing), 327,716 available for download.
Helping to make that gigantic pool of loveliness possible is of course the more than 62,000 unique app developers currently active on the store. Now, is the above $2B in revenue prediction for Apple starting to sound more plausible? – because it should be.
Get this – According to market research firm Gartner, the app market as a whole will be worth an estimated $27 Billion by the end of the year 2013. Up a whopping $23 Billion from the $4 Billion clocked in this year.
But on the mobile Web it’s a do-over, and it’s a totally different playbook from FREE! People are conditioned to pay for stuff over phones in a way they aren’t online, and they’re not flinching. According to Citibank’s US Internet Stock 2011 Playbook released today, Apple will generated as much as $2 billion in gross app revenue in 2011. For perspective, that’s about the same size as Citibank’s estimate for the entire online video advertising market next year, nevermind way more people watch YouTube than have an iPhone and it’s been in the cultural zeitgeist longer.
The report also cites Gartner’s estimates that the total app market was around $4 billion in 2010 and should grow to a whopping $27 billion by 2013. The biggest driver is smart phone penetration, the impact of which Citibank compares to the spread of broadband on the computer-based Internet in the early 2000s. Globally, smart phone unit sales grew 53% in 2010, and Citibank expects it to grow 29% in 2011 and stay in the mid-20% growth range through 2013.