Customers who obtain digital products from the Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) iTunes store are downloading mobile applications at a rate that is more than four times faster than the download rates for other iTunes content, such as songs and books.
The Finnish research firm, Asymco, reported last week that as a result of the expanding iOS user base, consumers are now downloading about 49.5 million iOS apps per day, while songs and books, combined, are driving roughly 10 million downloads per day.
Picture courtesy of Asymco
Asymco said the findings are based on its ongoing study of Apple market and consumer transaction trends that it updated last week with new data revealed by Apple at its Worldwide Developers Conference. At the event, Apple said that consumers have downloaded 30 million apps from its App Store; that app developers have received $5 billion in revenues from those apps; and that Apple now has 400 million active accounts in the iTunes store, which is used to distribute mobile apps, music, movies and other digital content.
Asymco offered additional characterizations of the Apple app economy based on its new analyses. It noted that app downloads outperform songs, iTunes' original product line, in various market growth metrics. For example, in the amount of time the App Store reach 30 million downloads, the song store sold just 3 million songs, Asymco said.
Songs are, of course, more expensive than apps, which are often distributed for free, which helps explain the higher download rates for apps. Asymco said that songs are sold for an average price of $1.29 while apps, including free apps, are sold for about 24 cents each on average. Nevertheless, the firm estimates that apps are now a bigger business for Apple than songs, and that apps have overtaken songs in delivering gross income for the company. Even so, Apple's cumulative payments to music companies still far exceed the payments it makes to developers.
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