IDC: Mobile app downloads to soar

IDC predicts that people will download more than 182 billion mobile apps in 2015

People will download more than 182 billion mobile apps in 2015, according to a new report from IDC.

That's up from 10.7 billion apps downloaded in 2010, according to Scott Ellison, the author of the report.

Both Apple and Google are each seeing 1 billion apps downloaded per month and Apple has already had 14 billion cumulative apps downloaded since the App Store opened, he said.

IDC's expectations dwarf those of ABI Research, which published a report in April saying that it expects a total of 44 billion cumulative app downloads worldwide by 2016. ABI could not explain how the figure was calculated; the analyst who wrote the report is based in Singapore and was unavailable to comment.

However, more interesting than the volume of app downloads will be the way that app developers monetize the apps in the future, IDC's Ellison said.

Currently, developers rely almost entirely on app purchases for their source of monetization. But using in-app purchasing is fast becoming their method for generating revenue, he said. App developers are emulating creators of mobile games who have long used in-game sales of additional levels, features and functions for revenue.

He points to a survey done by IDC and Appcelerator in the first quarter in which developers reported dramatically increased plans to use in-app purchasing, mobile advertising and mobile commerce in their products.

The shift toward monetizing through in-app purchases will require app developers to think differently about their apps in terms of how they incorporate in-app purchasing, he said.

In its report, ABI points to changes that could further encourage app downloading. It points to a rumor that Apple has made changes to the App Store so that it considers qualitative information such as reviews in addition to download statistics when ranking apps. That means that apps that sound better than they really are won't continue to take top spots in the ranking, ABI said. Those apps sometimes remain at the top as people download them and then discover they aren't useful.

Nancy Gohring covers mobile phones and cloud computing for The IDG News Service. Follow Nancy on Twitter at @idgnancy. Nancy's e-mail address is

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags smartphonesIDCconsumer electronicsSmartphone applications

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Nancy Gohring

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill


I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?