97% of Android Downloads were Free Apps

This is not a good news for Android developer.

Chomp reported that during the past month, April, 97%of all Android downloads throughout its search properties were free apps, and that number has increased by 2% from March.

For Android, other than apps in the range of $4.01-$5.00 are found to be consistent with 0.3% of the download volume since March, all other paid apps decreased. In addition, 97% of Android downloads were free apps.

In contrast, downloads of paid apps on iTunes increase by 3.8%from March. From the figure below, you can see that the apps with highest growth are in $0.99 group, followed by $1.99 group.

Apart from that, Distimo, a mobile analytics firm found that there are only 96 applications downloaded more than 5 million times in the Google Android Market. The graph below shows that the majority(51.8%) of free apps have been downloaded less than 1,000 times.

For paid applications, downloads are even lower.79.3% of paid apps have less than 100 downloads.

In March and April, 6 paid apps generated more than 500, 000 downloads each in the in Tunes Apps Store for iPhone in the U.S., but only 2 exceeded 5000,00 downloads in the Android Market Worldwide.  In terms of games category, iTunes also  performed better by having 10 games reaching over 250,000 downloads compared to Android that has only 5 games to reach the number.

Why is that happening?

According to Distimo, the main reason is due to Android’s Top Charts. As Google takes long performance of apps into account in order to rank them as the “top free” and “top paid” apps, the charts tend to change very little.

The Android market, only 388 free and paid 636 apps moved in and out its top rankings whereas iTunes has  843 free and 584 paid apps that rotated in and out of the top charts.

Distimo explained that being visible in these charts is important for generating more downloads.

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