Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login
The App Store bubble: How much does an App earn today? (servicestack.net)
33 points by mythz on Sept 15, 2010 | hide | past | web | favorite | 23 comments

Ah - another Schrodinger's Earnings post.

Write up your experiment to determine how much money your app can earn. Then get the story picked up by as many high profile sites as possible. Looking at the story determines the outcome of the experiment.


Also, decry made up statistics in the post, but then claim to define new trends by using a sample size of 1.

The more interesting post would be how his old app is doing financially.


Is this a bubble in the same sense? The dot com bubble was in the form of companies who made a lot of investments, predicting that there were customers (not to mention a business plan). In the case of the app store, end users are parting ways with their money here and now.

That's not to say that there won't be a malinvestment of time; the supply should increase to the point where there aren't as many customers per app, so eventually people won't make it as easily. But the whole thing isn't based on a flawed assumption, the customers really are there.

An App Store bubble burst would probably be the best thing to happen to the App Store - the sooner the better.

1) A bubble burst weeds out apps that don't have enough intrinsic value to the customer in the first place (E.g. T-pain, fart apps, and so on)

2) Devs, entrepreneurs, and investors will be forced to evaluate and form actual business plans/models as opposed to "let's throw an app out there and make some money"

3) An app won't always be and shouldn't be the end all and be all of a startup business plan - it's another platform that allows you to reach out to more customers

1) A bubble burst weeds out apps that don't have enough intrinsic value to the customer in the first place (E.g. T-pain, fart apps, and so on)

You might not like the T-Pain app, but the code behind it is likely a hell of a lot better than that of a fart app. Other then that, agreed.

Totally agree. The T-Pain app is technically impressive and I'd say, has entertainment value.

Agreed. Totally didn't mean to bring down the T-pain app to the level of the farties :)

You really are equating the iPhone software market with the desktop software market, where every piece is a pain to install and takes a lot of your attention and must be large and significant. While the app store is more of 1 dollar gumball machine which gives out kinder surprises, stickers and other small things. There is a plan towards a kinder surprise model. And often when developers just throw things on the app store without much planning, marketing or much of anything they usually make nothing and fail. Actually the majority don't make much at all.

For my first app store submission, I wrote a trivial program with little intrinsic value. It was accepted, but I later felt embarassed by it. I pulled it from the store (twice, actually) but received emails from people asking me to put it back.

What do you do when users seem to actually want software with little intrinsic value?

What do you do when users seem to actually want software with little intrinsic value?

Keep iterating and maybe you will become Zynga!

You realize that value is a subjective term while on your way to the bank to cash the check.

That sales/earnings ($0.00) for Word Mate don't look that great. I guess the point of the post ends up being that there was a time when some apps that produced various sounds or provided translations would make money (and maybe similar new apps still would if they had smart or cool-sounding names), but a Scrabble word-finder app in the current day and age won't earn squat.

You understand that the app has been out for one day and it's free until the 20'th of September right? How much it will sell being a clone of scrabble is up in the air right now though.

It's not a clone of scrabble, it's a cheat sheet for scrabble.

I think the app is in need of a better icon. I assumed it was a game.

ah... I could see the words with friends people using it then.

there's a ton of words-with-friends cheat apps in the app store already

The biggest problem with mobile app distribution is that if it doesn't work, he's just done. Updates don't boost you up the app store, and all of the downloads from word of mouth and blog reviews don't add up to a hill of beans.

Unlike on the web, or Facebook, where you could simply improve the product, he's screwed if it doesn't take off quickly.

You can always take it down and re-upload under a different name and you'll be on the "new" page for a short amount of time again.

You don't get enough from the new page to make it worth the effort it in my (rather limited) experience.

I think we are in for another jump when they expand Ping to the App Store / App Developers. The self promotion possibilities tied directly to the "buy now" button are going to be pretty interesting.

Great App article...stay on the App train before the burst @TableandBoard.com

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact