App Downloads to Pass 100bn in 2013, says Gartner

App downloads will reach 102bn in 2013, according to a Gartner report – up 59 per cent on 2012s total of 64bn. Over the five years from 2012, downloads will grow at a CAGR of 33.2 per cent, reaching a projected 269bn by 2017.

Total app revenue will hit $26.7bn (£16.7bn) in 2013, up 44 per cent on last year. The figure is forecast to rise at a CAGR of 32.8 per cent between 2012 and 2017, to the final sum of $76.6bn.

“We expect strong growth in downloads through 2014, but growth is forecast to slow down a bit in later years,” said Sandy Shen, research director at Gartner. “The average downloads per device should be high in early years as users get new devices and discover the apps they like, but over time they accumulate a portfolio of apps they like and stick to.”

Over the period, free apps will continue to cement their dominance of the market, making up 91 per cent of all downloads in 2013 – up from 89.6 per cent last year – and rising to a projected 94.5 per cent in 2017.

This rise will be reflected in the make up of app revenues: whereas in 2013, paid downloads are set to account for 75.9 per cent of all revenue, Gartner believes this will fall to 37.8 per cent in 2017, with the biggest chunk of income coming from in-app purchases (48.2 per cent) and the rest from advertising (14 per cent).