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Google Play blew away iOS App Store in downloads for Q4 2017

According to App Annie, the Google Play Store recorded 19 billion new app downloads in the fourth quarter of 2017— well above the download levels from the iOS App Store.

Published onJanuary 25, 2018

Google Play Store
  • A new report says over 19 million new app downloads from the Google Play Store were made during the fourth quarter of 2017.
  • That download number was over 145 percent higher than downloads from Apple’s iOS App Store during the same time period.
  • However, the iOS App Store recorded almost twice as much revenue than the Google Play Store during Q4 2017.

Who says apps are dead? A new report from the App Annie research firm claims that, during the recently completed fourth quarter of 2017, nearly 27 million new app downloads were recorded between Apple’s App Store and the Google Play Store. App Annie says that’s a new record for app downloads, and represents a growth of seven percent compared to the same time period a year ago.

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The report also claims that worldwide app downloads from the Google Play Store came in at over 19 billion during the fourth quarter, reaching its highest levels ever. It exceed the app downloads from the iOS App Store by 145 percent. Keep in mind that App Annie only includes new downloads of apps in its report, and not reloaded apps or updates. Downloads from emerging markets saw the highest overall growth in the Google Play Store, with India, Indonesia, and Brazil getting higher year-over-year numbers. Indeed, India actually surpassed the US for the total amount of app downloads during all of 2017 when combining iOS and Google Play numbers.

While Google Play may have a solid lead over the iOS App Store in total downloads, Apple’s store generated far more revenue during the fourth quarter. The total worldwide consumer spending for the iOS App Store was over $11.5 billion during the fourth quarter, or 95 percent ahead of the Google Play Store’s revenue numbers. In-app subscriptions for video streaming apps lead the way for revenues in the iOS App Store during the quarter, while in-app subscriptions for productivity apps were the leading source of revenue in the Google Play Store. App Annie noted that part of this growth was due to the addition of in-app subscriptions for extra cloud storage in Google Drive.

There’s no indication that app downloads or revenues generated directly from apps will end their growth anytime soon, but Google must be a bit worried that the Play Store is still running well behind Apple with in-app revenues. It will be interesting to see if it can turn that situation around in 2018.

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