1.8 mn third-party apps on App Store eclipse Apple’s own apps

New Delhi: Third-party apps have grown from 500 to more than 1.8 million since the App Store’s launch more than a decade ago, and a new report has found that third-party apps experience broad regional and global success on the App Store, even eclipsing Apple’s own apps.

Economists at Analysis Group published a new report on the proliferation of third-party apps on the App Store, with new insights into how third-party apps perform in categories — ranging from maps to music streaming, among others.

According to Apple, which offers 60 first-party apps, more than 99.99 per cent of iOS apps are made by third-party developers.

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“The App Store has grown substantially throughout the years, sustaining an expanding community of developers and content creators and fueling a massive and growing ecosystem. This growth reflects the dynamism of the App Store, its community, and its ecosystem, which benefits developers, users and Apple,” said Juliette Caminade and Markus von Wartburg from Analysis Group.

According to the report, third-party apps are the most popular among iPhone users in most regions for major app types, including music streaming, TV and movie streaming, reading, communication, and mapping apps.

“Across many app types, Apple’s own apps account for a relatively small share of app usage among iPhone users. This is the case even though some Apple apps are preinstalled to enable core functionality of the device,” the findings showed.

iPhone users often use multiple apps within a single category, especially apps for communicating, reading the news, watching videos or navigating.

“Our quantitative analyses of engagement with apps (not merely app downloads) demonstrates that, across many app types, Apple’s own apps are eclipsed in popularity and account for a relatively small share of usage,” said Caminade.

Apple makes available a number of tools and core technologies to all developers to help them create innovative apps, including more than 250,000 software development building blocks called APIs.

Developers can also access more than 40 Apple software development kits that let them harness the power of machine learning, augmented reality, and other cutting-edge technologies, said the tech giant.

“By providing many ways for iPhone users to expand and complement their experience, the App Store has been central to the continued success of the iPhone,” added von Wartburg.

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