The mobile app market will continue to expand in 2017 and beyond, according to a new report from the research firm App Annie. In fact, the firm has predicted that total worldwide annual revenue from Android apps will surpass those from iOS apps for the first time in 2017.
There’s a big “but…” in App Annie’s report. The predicted revenue from Android apps also includes ones that are downloaded from third-party stores, especially ones in China that are operated by Tencent, Baidu, Xiaomi, Huawei and others, in addition to revenue from apps in the Google Play Store. Apple’s iOS App Store is still expected to generate more revenue per device than the Google Play Store though at least 2021, according to the report. App Annie predicts that in that year, revenues from the iOS App Store will reach $60 billion. The Google Play Store is predicted to bring in $42 billion in revenue for that year, and Android third-party app stores stores are expected to generate $36 billion.
The five biggest markets for mobile apps are the U.S., China, Japan, South Korea, and the UK. Combined revenues from all five are expected take up 85% of all worldwide app stores by 2021. It added that global downloads across all mobile app stores are predicted to increase by a healthy 20 percent annually, and will reach a total of 352 billion in 2021. If this report is accurate, it appears that the mobile app industry will continue to grow at a strong and steady rate for the next several years.