More than 81bn apps have been downloaded from mobile app stores | Adult | Mobile Entertainment

More than 81bn apps have been downloaded from mobile app stores

Amazon Kindle Fire apps
Zen Terrelonge

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Adult / December 13th 2012 at 10:45AM

And 89 per cent of them come from native app stores.

Networks were successful in distributing mobile entertainment to their customers though their own stores several years ago, but we're living in a different world today.

Native stores built into operating systems, like Android's Google Play, account for 89 per cent of the 81 billion downloaded smartphone and tablet apps, according to ABI Research, and that's only likely to grow as the trend of operator billing picks up.

Indeed, BlackBerry and Google have both recently integrated Bango's mobile payments solution into their respective app stores to allow shoppers to pay for their content on monthly bills instead of making an immediate payment.

Aapo Markkanen, senior analyst, said: "The current status quo is based on storefronts that the operating system vendors provide as part of the OS experience, and there is no evidence that this would change in the future.

"A year ago it still looked like that, for example, mobile operators could find a viable business case in the curation of Android apps, but that opportunity evaporated once Google got its storefront act together. Today, it makes sense for operators to distribute apps only under special circumstances, such as the ones that we're seeing in China.

"Running a user-friendly app distribution channel is expensive. Besides the adequate hosting and billing systems it takes quite a lot of human labor, since successful app discovery requires some form of editorial approach. The opportunity for smaller storefronts built around selected categories is therefore limited."

There are exceptions to the rule though, demonstrated with B2B apps and selected consumer categories that bigger stores don't want to be associated with, such as adult. Mikandi is a prime example; a mobile porn store that has built a business out of the distribution of explicit content.

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