App Annie: Emerging markets drive Google Play downloads past Apple App Store

Rapid growth in emerging markets saw Google Play worldwide quarterly downloads exceed iOS App Store downloads by around 60 percent in the second quarter of 2014, according to App Annie. The mobile analytics firm's latest index shows Google Play activity up from about 45 percent from last quarter.

  • Google Play's growth has been rapid. In App Annie's Q2 2013 Market Index, for example, Google Play downloads were only 10 percent higher than iOS App Store downloads.
  • Taiwan, Kuwait and Turkey also contributed significantly to iOS revenue, each growing more than 30 percent quarter-over-quarter.
  • Japan continued to grow faster than the rest of the global market, with games making up 90 percent of its combined iOS App Store and Google Play revenue.
  • The sports category saw an overall growth of 20 percent, probably thanks to the World Cup attracting fans not only in Brazil but in Germany, Argentina and the U.S. 

Source: App Annie

"Even with this quarter's impressive download rates, smartphone penetration in India — the world's second most populated country — is only 10 percent," the report said, noting IDC projections that India's smartphone penetration could rise noticeably in the future as additional low-cost smartphone options hit the market and vendors increasingly target less populated regions. "Strong Google Play downloads combined with future smartphone adoption could help set the stage for rapid growth in India's mobile app-related revenue by 2017."

More than anything, App Annie's latest index report shows how much of the big growth is happening outside of the U.S. China, for example, is seen as pivotal to Apple's growth as consumers there snap up their first iPhones or, in some cases, lower-priced versions. In Japan, meanwhile, the explosion in mobile gaming can be attributed in part to the ongoing introduction of new titles. App Annie pointed to the success of Monster Strike and Disney Tsum Tsum as just a few of the examples. If there was ever a time to start thinking about localizing your mobile game and targeting the international market, the data suggest it's now.

For more:
- download the report here

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