Consumers spent about $41.5 billion on apps downloaded from Apple’s App Store during the first six months of the year, up almost 22.5 per cent compared to the same period in 2020, the latest report from market analysis portal Finbold showed.
App Store spending during the January-June period is almost double the $23.4bn spent by consumers on the Android app store, Google Play, said the report, which is based on data compiled by marketing intelligence firm SensorTower.
Google Play spending grew by 30 per cent a year, the report said.
“The App Store spending has remained significant [but] Google Play appears to be catching up by recording the highest growth rate between the first half of 2020 and first half of 2021,” it said.
“Although iOS [Apple’s iPhone operating system] remained dominant, Android flourished as the pandemic remained persistent in countries with an Android-dense population,” the report said.
Apps have become more popular amid coronavirus-related travel restrictions and lockdowns. Besides entertainment, developers have found new ways to keep people connected and help them to learn and work from home.
Although Google Play has more subscribers – as Samsung, Huawei and many other manufacturers use its Android platform – Apple’s App Store generated more sales.
There are more than 2.5 billion active Android devices, with the platform supporting devices for premium and budget-conscious customers, Google said.
Apple stated it had 1.5 billion active devices in 2020, up from 1.4 billion devices in the previous year.
ByteDance-owned video-sharing platform TikTok became the highest-grossing app in the first half at $920m, the Finbold report said. It was followed by YouTube at $564.7m and dating app Tinder at $520.3m.
In the future, consumers are expected to spend more as developers use new technology such as 5G, which is becoming popular globally.
“Based on the established trend over the last two years, it is likely the spending will keep increasing as players in the sector aim to offer the best experience," the report said.
“Due to the onset of new technology such as cloud streaming, apps in sectors like gaming are likely to experience further growth. This ability is aided by factors like the increasing penetration of 5G technology in leading markets.”