Users on Apple App Store and Google Play spent a combined $34.4 billion (roughly Rs. 235,000 crores) in the first half of 2018, according to the latest estimates by Sensor Tower. The new figure shows an year-over-year increase of 27.8 percent over the first half of last year, where users spent a total of $26.9 billion (roughly Rs. 183,000 crores). The App Store leads the race when it comes to app revenues as consumer spending on Apple's platform is claimed to have grown 34.7 percent to $38.5 billion (roughly Rs. 263,000 crores) last year. This is nearly double the estimated $20.1 billion (roughly Rs. 137,000 crores) spent on Google Play. Notably, unlike the Apple offering, the official Android app store is not available in China, the world's largest smartphone market.
App Store users spent $22.6 billion (roughly Rs. 154,000 crores) in the first half, which was nearly 90 percent higher or 1.9 times more than the user spending of $11.8 billion (roughly Rs. 80,706 crores) on Google Play during the first half, estimates Sensor Tower. It is also reported that the App Store spending was up 26.8 percent year-over-year, whereas Google Play spending grew 29.7 percent. Netflix is claimed to be the highest grossing non-game app worldwide in the first half of the year - followed by Tinder and Tencent Video - on both platforms.
While the App Store dominates the market of app stores when it comes to consumer spending, Google Play leads on the part of app downloads. Sensor Tower's report claims that the growth of app downloads on Google Play reached 36 billion in the first half, while the App Store's estimated 15 billion. This is 13.1 percent versus 10.6 percent between the growth of Google Play app downloads and the App Store downloads, respectively. The first-time app installs globally reached around 51 billion, growing 11.3 percent over the first half of 2017.
"Worldwide first-time app installs reached approximately 51 billion, an increase of 11.3 percent over the first half of 2017, when downloads totalled an estimated 45.8 billion across both stores," the report said.
Apart from apps, revenues from games on the App Store grew 15.1 percent year-over-year to $16.3 billion (roughly Rs. 111,000 crores) in the first half of the year. Google Play, on the other hand, received $10.3 billion (roughly Rs. 70,467 crores) on the part of user spending during the same period, an year-over-year growth of 26 percent. The total spending in mobile games reportedly grew 19.1 percent to an estimated $26.6 billion (roughly Rs. 181,000 crores) worldwide on the App Store and Google Play. This represents nearly 78 percent of the total spent on apps across both app stores. Honor of Kings, Monster Strike, and Fate/Grand Order were the three top grossing mobile games worldwide across both stores.
Similar to the case of app installs, game installs on Google Play take on the App Store with a total of 15 billion, representing 77 percent of all new mobile game installs in the first half of the year between Google Play and the App Store. Game downloads on the App Store on the other hand grew to an estimated 4.5 billion, taking the total to 19.5 billion game downloads across both app stores. PUBG Mobile, Helix Jump, and Subway Surfers were the three most downloaded apps across both stores.