September 16, 2011
I can hear Dr. Evil (a.k.a., Mike Myers) saying it with pinky tucked firmly to chin: One. Meellyon. Apps.
According to statistics compiled by Appsfire's AppGenome project, the mobile industry has hit a notable milestone. Developers have coded-up one million applications for the Android and iOS platforms combined. Just over half, 52%, were developed for the iPhone, leaving 48% for Android smartphones.
Appfire points out that this is not the total number of apps available for download in the iPhone App Store and Android Market. It explained, "Only 800,000 from the 1 million apps are available for download, i.e. active; the others are either being finalized or have been removed from the stores."
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As of today, Apple advertises that it has 425,000 applications for the iPhone in its App Store. Google advertises about 250,000 applications in the Android Market, though it reached that milestone in mid-July and there might be closer to 300,000. Ovum's Jan Dawson said on Twitter, "Two months later should be 300k..."
What about other app stores? Microsoft's Marketplace for Mobile has north of 20,000 applications. BlackBerry AppWorld is over the 40,000 mark.
Clearly developers have picked the platforms that offer the best chances of earning them some income. Apple's iOS platform and the App Store have driven huge growth in the mobile application space. When the App Store launched in 2008, it started with just 500 applications. It's truly amazing to see how far the industry has come in just a few short years.
To that, I say: Good work, developers! You've created an insane number of applications for smartphones--or at least some smartphones. People who own Android smartphones or iPhones should all pay you a dollar for your hard work. Go ahead. Put your feet up for a couple of days. Relax, you deserved it.
Where do we go next? Well, AppFire says the next milestone it's looking for is the one million active (i.e., available from an app store or other download) apps mark. AppFire thinks there will be one million active applications by the end of 2011.
What will be more interesting, I think, is to see when the number of Android apps catches up to and passes the number of iOS apps. Anyone care to wager a guess?
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