App Store Ecosystem Generated $519 Billion In Commerce In 2019

Apple announced last night that the App Store ecosystem has generated $519 billion in payments and sales worldwide in 2019 alone. New research conducted by Analysis Group’s independent economists indicates that the categories that generate the most revenue are mobile commerce apps, digital goods and services, and in-app advertising, which has swept through 175 countries and regions.

“The App Store is a place where innovators and dreamers can bring their ideas to life, and users can find safe and trusted tools to make their lives better,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “In a challenging and unsettled time, the App Store provides enduring opportunities for entrepreneurship, health and well-being, education, and job creation, helping people adapt quickly to a changing world. We’re committed to doing even more to support and nurture the global App Store community — from one-developer shops in nearly every country to businesses that employ thousands of workers — as it continues to foster innovation, create jobs, and propel economic growth for the future.”
The research shows that when sales from other channels (such as physical goods and services) are included in the calculation, Apple directly pays developers only a small portion of the total. Since Apple only collects commissions for payments related to digital goods and services, more than 85% of the total value of $519 billion is completely attributed to third-party developers and enterprises of all sizes.

Here are the key takeaways:
  • Of the $519 billion the App Store ecosystem supported in 2019, the study found that sales from physical goods and services accounted for the largest share, at $413 billion.
  • Within that category, m-commerce apps generated the vast majority of sales, and of those, retail was the largest, at $268 billion.
  • Travel apps, including Expedia and United, accounted for $57 billion.
  • Ride-hailing apps, including Uber and Lyft, comprised $40 billion in sales, and food delivery apps, including DoorDash and Grubhub, made up $31 billion.
  • Billings and sales from digital goods and services comprised $61 billion, and this category included apps for music and video streaming, fitness, education, ebooks and audiobooks, news and magazines, and dating services, among others.
  • Games, the type of app most downloaded in 2019, was the largest generator of billings and sales within this category.
  • Notable games of 2019 included "Mario Kart Tour," which was the most downloaded game of 2019, and "Sky: Children of the Light" from indie developer thatgamecompany, which won Apple's 2019 iPhone Game of the Year.
  • In-app advertising sales accounted for $45 billion, and of that, 44 percent was derived from games.
Apple says that the App Store is currently home to almost 2 million apps and visited by half a billion people each week across 175 countries.

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