Saturday, July 9, 2011

Download numbers

When reading other's developers blog, I always appreciate reading the posts about the number of downloads. It is always useful to know how many downloads to expect, and what impact different events can have.
The mobile landscape is changing fast though, and while you can get a pretty good idea of the dynamics of the Apple Appstore,  there's not a lot of information regarding the Android Market (AM) and the new Amazon Appstore (AA). Here's my humble contribution (please note that all the numbers given are approximations).

PP on Android Market
During the first two weeks, PP was getting 800 downloads per day. However it got featured by Google, and the downloads increased a hundred folds (it got up to 80k downloads on one day). During the one or two weeks it was featured, it got about 900k downloads and entered the most downloaded free app list. I am guessing that currently, every free app in the top 10 are getting at least 40k downloads per day.
Right now PP is getting 3k downloads per day.
One metric that people rarely share is the number of active installations. It is particularly relevant if your app is advertisement based, because you want people to keep using (and thus having) your application for as long as possible. Currently, 37% of the people that downloaded PP kept it, which I think is pretty good considering it's a free application (I download a lot of free apps, but most of the time uninstall them quickly).

Active installations of PewPew.
PP2 on Android Market
Shortly after it reached 1 million downloads, I released PP2. Two days later, I updated PP to include a link/advertisement for PP2. I was getting around two hundreds downloads per day. PewPew 2 was then featured, and there was a 50% boost which is nice, but really nothing extraordinary.
If I recall correctly, with 400 downloads per day, PP2 was the number 5 in the top selling games category. Right now it is around #40, with around 50 downloads per day.
Active installations of PewPew 2. Currently the rate is 85%

PP and PP2 on the Amazon Appstore (aka the Useless Appstore)
While I was featured on the AM, Amazon contacted me so that they could get my application on their store. I happily obliged, having heard that if you were lucky enough to be selected for their "free application a day" program, you'd earn a boatload of cash. The idea was that Amazon selects one application per day, makes it free for their customers but still pay 20% of the application's price to the developer instead of the usual 70%.
PP2 got selected for the "free application a day" operation, but I actually did not earn anything because Amazon makes you sign a contract that cancels the one where the 20% are mentioned. In the end the operation translated into 100k downloads of PP2, but 0$ in my pocket. Some might say that it's worth it because of the free advertisement you get, but on the other hand you do loose quite a lot of potential sales. More importantly, I believe that giving out your products (even for a short amount of time) devaluates their value, but that's a topic that deserve a separate post.
The last thing I'll say about the AA is that in June, PP2 got 18 downloads...

Getting featured on the AM is awesome when you are a free app, advertising a payed app from a free app that is featured is a good idea, and it appears that the top games aren't raking in as much money as the top games on iOS.
Also, currently the AA is useless. If the rumors that Amazon is going to release its own tablets are true, that might change, but for now the AA is not interesting for developers.