Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) (NASDAQ:GOOG)’s Android, an open architecture cell phone operating system, has the most downloads but applications developed for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s iOS operating system generate the most revenue, according to a new study.
iOS outspaced Android in revenue generation
A recent study from App Annie, which reviewed download data from app stores in 150 nations, found that during the 2nd quarter of 2014 applications downloaded from Google Play were at 60 percent higher levels than the Apple App Store. Perhaps most interesting, however, is that the Apple App Store significantly outpaced Google Play in terms of revenue generation, producing 80 percent more cash than Google.
While one might conclude that Apple’s iOS customers are more elite and thus spend more, as brand studies suggest Apple customer think, the study implied the differences could be more due to geography then demography.
Android’s app downloads boosted by emerging markets
Google Play’s largest downloads occurred due to growth in Brazil, Thailand and India, nations that traditionally have not opened their wallets towards mobile app spending. Contrast this with Apple, where Japan and China are its areas of revenue dominance while Turkey, Taiwan and Kuwait witnessed their markets grow by over 30 percent in the first quarter.
The report noted five major trend occurring in the mobile space. Google Play had widened the lead in app downloads; India moved into the top three for Google Play downloads; China’s love affair with iOS continues to grow; new games are keeping Japan “ahead of the pack”; and Brizil continues its “red hot streak” in regards to downloads.
The move in India is interesting, as the country hadn’t entered the top three since Q3 2013, but it seems to be making a comeback.
According to IDC, however, India was the fastest-growing market in Asia-Pacific smartphone shipments from Q1 2013 to Q1 2014, the report noted. The jump was likely due to the large number of consumers switching from feature phones to smartphones.
The report pointed to the importance of China in Apple’s international growth strategy. During its second quarter earnings call, Apple reported a record high revenue in China of almost $10 billion, which included retail sales. The greater China region was also cited as a main driver behind the iPhone’s 17% growth, due in large part to demand for the lower-priced iPhone models and purchases from first-time iPhone buyers.