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Over 5m Apps on the App Store by 2020

Alex Spencer

App Store graph Sensor TowerThere will be 5.1m active apps available on the iOS App Store by the end of 2020, up 73 per cent on 2016's number.

That's according to a report from app insights firm Sensor Tower, based on historical data from 2008 – when there were just over 5,000 apps on the Store – through to the present day.

Sensor Tower expects another 2.1m apps to appear on the store over the next four years, doubling the current number.

"It’s clear from the difficulty developers are having getting their apps discovered on a store containing roughly 2m apps that some significant steps on Apple’s part will be required to make discoverability viable when there are more than twice that number to contend with," said Sensor Tower head of mobile insights Randy Nelson. "We’ve seen the first steps on Apple’s part to address discoverability issues, such launching new categories and announcing plans for Search Ads in advance of June’s WWDC. But in light of our new findings, we’re convinced that far more significant changes to the navigation, curation, and overall presentation of the App Store will be needed to support an ecosystem that’s twice today’s size just four years from now."

In May 2016 alone, 48,231 new apps made their debut on the App Store. Games were by far the biggest category, accounting for 43 per cent of these apps.