Apple App Store Generating 4 Times Revenue as Google Play, Study Finds

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Eddy Cue, Apple senior vice president of internet software and services, helps introduce the new iOS software at an Apple event at the Worldwide Developer's Conference on June 13, 2016 in San Francisco.

An app downloaded in the Apple App Store generates four times the revenue for developers as one that’s purchased in Google Play, according to new research by App Annie. The report notes that, worldwide, the App Store generates twice as much money as Google Play despite Apple having half the amount of downloads as Google.

The main driver of this revenue growth, researchers say, are the kinds of in-app subscription for services like Netflix and HBO Now. On-demand media is surging on mobile, with video and music streaming leading the charge.

"In-app purchases have been a fantastic revenue driver, yet we've increasingly seen apps like HBO Now and Netflix implement subscription models via app stores in the past year -- and this strategy is returning dividends to publishers," says Danielle Levitas, SVP of Research at App Annie. "The iOS platform proves dynamic in its use of exclusive content on both HBO Now and Tidal, engaging a loyal and targeted audience of power purchasers."

Levitas added that recently announced changes to Apple’s subscription model -- giving developers more options for selling and monetizing their apps -- "will significantly expand app store revenue and drive continued growth for iOS."

App Annie projects mobile app revenues to grow from $42 billion in 2015 to $52 billion this year. By 2020, revenues should crack $100 billion.