A Tale of Three App Stores

After reading this article, listing some of the troubles with the Amazon Appstore, my first thought was he missed the single biggest reason Amazon’s store is struggling: Sales.

My Audiobooks app is listed in the iOS App Store, Google Android Market, and the Amazon Appstore.  It is available as either a free (Ad-Supported) or paid ($0.99) version.  I pulled the numbers from the three stores for June.  They are as follows:

As you can see Google Market outperforms Amazon by a 15X on free and 18X on paid.  I’d be happy to put up with quite a lot of problems with a marketplace (believe me Android Market has it’s problems) if it got me downloads, but Amazon seems to be failing on both fronts.

An interesting thing to note is that my apps are actually higher ranked (#11 vs #66) in the Amazon store than the Android store, so it isn’t just a question of this app.  It is systemic.

For a bit of context neither marketplace is anything near as successful as the iOS App Store, which outperforms Amazon by a staggering 385X on free and 849X on paid.

Until Android can figure out a way to close that gap it doesn’t matter what other problems there are with your store.  Without profits most developers can’t afford to work on your platform.  As for me, I’m 100% focused on iOS5/Lion right now and will be for the foreseeable future.

David Smith