App downloads set to double in next 4 years


The Apple App Store is home to over a million apps, as is the Google Play Store. Each of them has also seen tens of billions of downloads.

With those kind of numbers, it would be tempting to think that we’re completely saturated with apps. It would be tempting, but it would also be wrong. At least that’s what new data from online marketing research specialist eMarketer suggests.

Even though app download numbers fluctuate even on a daily basis, the company says, the annual total is only likely to keep growing as smartphone and tablet use grows, especially in emerging market countries.

Aggregating predicted numbers from Portio Research and Juniper Research, eMarketer reckons that the total number of apps downloaded worldwide is set to double from around 80-million in 2013 to 160-million or so in 2017.

App downloads

Interestingly, eMarketer also unearthed research that suggests app discovery may not be quite as dead as some have claimed.

In March 2013 polling, InMobi found that just over half (55%) of US smartphone users typically browsed the app store to find new mobile apps. A little over a third meanwhile base their downloads on the recommendations of family and friends.

App user sources

It’s worth remembering however that while the increased number of app downloads will mean more money in some pockets, the vast majority of apps out there won’t even come close to sniffing out a profit.



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