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US iPhone users spent, on average, $79 on apps last year, up 36% from 2017 (techcrunch.com)
172 points by kjhughes 66 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 128 comments



It seems weird to say users are spending the money on apps if this includes Amazon or Uber. The users are not spending the money on the app, they're spending it on the product and/or service with the the app in the middle facilitating the arrangement. Its different than purchasing software that does something by itself for you (like a spreadsheet). Eg, one doesn't say that customers spend $X per year on retail, they are said to spend it via retail.

Not that the app isn't an important part of it, but a helpful and knowledgeable employee in a retail environment doesn't get the same headlines, even though s/he isn't a buggy, heavily gamed algorithm recommending baby gear to people who just had a miscarriage.

'Users are spending 36% more on eCommerce than 2017' doesn't have as nice a ring to it.

...also, what is the mean number? How much of that $79 is from there being no meaningful laws against Whaling?


It claims to cover IAP [1] only, which wouldn't include Amazon nor Uber as those payments go directly to those entities. Also many companies who formerly relied on IAP, like Netflix and Spotify, are starting to bypass it entirely [2].

[1] https://developer.apple.com/in-app-purchase/

[2] https://musically.com/2018/08/22/netflix-joins-spotify-in-by...


I use apple pay inside Uber do we think that counts?


That shouldn't count as an IAP.


Interesting, thanks for the info


In India, Apple continues to screw itself with its short sightedness by insisting on credit / debit cards for all Apple Payments and refusing to integrate itself with India's many innovative digital payment systems.

Even though I have wanted to pay for a few games and 1 or 2 really good apps, I can't because Apple doesn't accept my indian cards nor other alternative indian payment systems.

Nor can we buy iTunes / App store credit online. Nor are we permitted to use iTunes / App Store gift certificates from US or elsewhere.

Personally, I wonder if this is because:

1. The central bank's (RBI) rule that financial data of indians should be stored in india.

2. Indian payment systems make it difficult to bill someone automatically (without the involvement of the payee).

3. Indian payment systems prevent "leakage" of your "credit worthiness" / credit rating, unlike credit cards.


It's not just Apple and India. As an European it is incredibly annoying to spend money at US "startups" (loosely using this terms, this included businesses that had been in operation for 10+ years); I cannot use Giropay, Sofort or SEPA Debit, I have to use a Credit Card. And I can't even use a safe prepaid credit card, I have to use a "real" credit card or else my account gets banned (mailgun did that to me, there was no warning prior and I had to go through support to find out and get unbanned).

It really makes one notice how many startups never ever spend a singular thought on overseas markets, or if they did, only about the scary regulations, not the payment systems.


Honestly, as a fellow European I never heard of those. Not even in passing.

But I did try to pay with a card in the Netherlands at the biggest local supermarket: - Visa not accepted - Mastercard not accepted - Amex not accepted

They only accepted payment using a local card that I've never heard of.

Obviously had no problems with those cards anywhere else in the developed world. Except for Europe.

So yeah, Europe needs to get their shit together and start accepting and issuing the same card as the ROW.

And then all problems go away.


> But I did try to pay with a card in the Netherlands at the biggest local supermarket: - Visa not accepted - Mastercard not accepted - Amex not accepted

I don't know where you went to, but I've never seen a store that accepts cashless payments and doesn't accept Visa.

They might not accepts cards for low amount purchases, due to the fees, but that's another thing.


Albert Heijn, the largest Dutch supermarket chain does not accept Visa or Mastercard debit cards for any sort of payment.


I've bought stuff there and I don't remember paying cash. I only have Visa debit/credit cards.


> Europe needs to get their shit together and start accepting and issuing the same card as the ROW.

No they don't - there is no reason for a country to accept the payment system of another country. Priority should be to pay using local currency or using the local payment system.

Control over one's monetary system is essential to maintain the sovereignty of a nation. As is the right of a citizen to pay (or accept) cash or do transaction using other legal alternatives.

(That said, I understand your frustration as we are all complaining about the same thing).


In Germany there is also the Girocard (formerly EC Card), which largely uses SEPA Debit. Almost all European Countries use some form of SEPA Debit to power their card systems.

I don't think Europe needs to get their shit together, I'd rather if POS terminals would accept more payment systems. Credit Cards are not the world currency.


When you put it in context, there's a handful of people using all kinds of local systems. Then there's hundreds of millions if not billions that use the other well-established systems.

Regarding credit cards, very few Visa and Mastercard are credit, especially in Europe.


> Regarding credit cards, very few Visa and Mastercard are credit, especially in Europe.

I am sure the same is true in India too - most are debit cards. The monopoly, the high fees they charged and the profit ending up in a foreign country was the reason that the indian government launched their own payment and card system. Visa and Mastercard were forced to lower their fees to remain competitive. (And now they are complaining and lobbying the US government to pressurise India to ease their new laws regarding data storage in India).


Credit card transactions have much higher fees. By accepting them you would put a burden on all of your customers who are not using them.


Debit card transaction fees' are much lower.

Still, the solution to this problem would be to charge the client whatever Visa or Mastercard is charging as an extra. A practice I've encountered before in small shops in London, banned across the EU due to clients facing unexpected charges at the end of the process.


The practise would be legal if the fee was visible before paying with the card, ie you put in the card and then the PoS terminal adjusts the price according to the card type so the cashier can tell you the true final price if it happens.

That isn't supported in any PoS system I know of. Not in Europe atleast.


Wish I could find it, but I read an article recently about all the work Amazon is putting into India, working with small traders to handle ordering, payment and delivery in person etc when you can't rely on things like the postal service or easy access to online payment. It makes for an interesting contrast to what you describe as Apple's lack of local awareness.


> when you can't rely on things like the postal service

FYI, While Amazon is really serious about India and is doing some good work there, the Indian Postal Service is really good and reliable. In fact, even Amazon uses the indian post to deliver to remote areas where they don't have have amazon delivery offices.


That's good to know.

Something I found interesting was the problem of many rural people not really having a formal address. It's so easy to take for granted that everyone has a house number and street with some kind of postal code, in in-fact that they even have a name with a given and family part. You can't always rely on these sorts of things because the world is big and wonderful and full of variety.


Uber integrated with local payment processor Paytm and they are doing excellent. Apple may be "in their own world" to accept paytm terms, feels more of arrogance issues to me.


They don't need to use PayTm - they just need to integrate Apple Pay with India's payment infrastructure. They just don't want to do that as they may come under RBI's regulation and other indian laws.


According to media coverage, Apple put the UPI integration on hold due to "regulatory issues". That's mainly RBI data localization requirements ([1] on your list).


> I can't because Apple doesn't accept my indian cards nor other alternative indian payment systems.

Read this: https://www.isaumya.com/paypal-google-wallet-indian-debit-ca...

I use my SBI international debit card for apple music, and used HDFC international card before. Domestic card doesn't work and you need special activation. It wasn't possible to use SBI card two year before. Also, almost all credit cards are supported.


The link is quite useful - thanks.

My issue is that I prefer to pay online using net banking. And I have opted for a RuPay debit card (not Visa or Mastercard). I don't see why I should get a specific card from a specific bank to do transactions with Apple - it's just plain ridiculous!


You can't buy iTunes gift cards with any of those payment systems?


Not online. It requires you to go buy a card with a value of <not the cost of the app>.

I bet people who really need it top their accounts up (can you do this in the Apple store, or is it left on the card?) but you can imagine how much of sales are impulse purchases.



So there is no way for you to buy anything of the appstore?


You can. You just need a credit or a debit card. Personally I’m fine with it. I don’t know if Apple has integrated with any payment processors apart from credit card companies anywhere else in the world anyway; expecting them to do it in India would be a bit strange.


This doesn't sound like they're expecting anything:

> In India, Apple continues to screw itself with its short sightedness by insisting on credit / debit cards for all Apple Payments and refusing to integrate itself with India's many innovative digital payment systems.

It just sounds like they see it as a shortcoming of Apple's payment platform which affects the adoption of paid items in India, which seems like a fair evaluation.


> expecting them to do it in India would be a bit strange.

Why - one of their strong brand values is that their products are "user-friendly" because they listen to customers. So I don't see anything strange in making it easy for their customers to spend money on their platform, as it would only earn them more goodwill, not to mention increase their profits.


Only certain international debit cards and credit cads are accepted.


Last I checked, nothing the old iTunes Store infrastructure touches including the App Store takes Apple Pay either. For that matter, neither does the Online Apple Store app, at least as of May last year when I last tried it.

I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for Apple to stop repeatedly shooting themselves in the foot when it comes to anything at all to do with their e-commerce platform.


Title is bit misleading (non-native speaker here). Article is about in-app spending.


In-App makes sense. I’ve recently purchased a good amount of not-free apps but the only in-app stuff I’ve purchased has been “pro” versions of free apps I’ve downloaded. I’m guessing the former don’t count.


Would things like Evernote subscriptions count towards that?


If purchased through the app and you were billed by the App Store (i.e. you were asked by iOS to use Touch ID/FaceID/Apple ID password) then yes.


This information isn't very useful without knowing how the number of iPhone users are changing.

This could be interpreted as a happily growing ecosystem, or it could be interpreted as budget oriented users being squeezed off the platform leaving only people who are locked-in to subscription apps. Presumably it is the former, but we can't tell that from the article because there are no absolute numbers.


Apple said at their last call that they have 1.4 billion active devices, up 100 million from a year ago.

Not quite people, but the userbase appears to be growing.


Apple has 900 million active iPhone users, and 1.4 billion total active devices. [0] Analysts have had this range pegged for awhile, but in Apple's most recent quarterly report they officially revealed those numbers.

[0] - http://www.asymco.com/2019/01/30/a-billion-users/


Why wouldn’t they if you’re buying the subscription through the App Store?


On android I spent a fortune because I knew I could refund it if the app was bad or didnt do what I wanted. On iPhone I'm scrooge. So far for 2019 I've spent $1.


You can refund iOS apps if that's your problem. I've never been denied a request. I don't feel I spend less on IOS than I did on Android (probably more because apps seem to be a bit more expensive).


There’s no need to request a refund on Android after trying out a paid app, however; simply delete a paid app within two hours of purchase and it’s refunded.


Okay. Doesn't change the fact that you can trivially get a refund even days after buying an app on iOS. That basically strikes down the argument that one can't "try" apps on iOS, because you can get refunds and it's easy and they're quite generous with it (from my experience, at least). Steam also doesn't automatically refund you if you uninstall within 2 hours, it's still a great refund experience.


Many iPhone apps aren't well described enough for the user to know what they're expecting before they buy. And even legitimate refunds are obnoxious.

Plus app store browsing and discovery sucks.


What I've really started to notice is the churn where an app gets abandoned, somebody else makes an almost-clone of it, that app gets abandoned, somebody else makes an almost-clone of it... etc.


Probably why in-app purchases are so popular (from developers).


I would buy much more if I could try for a few days. I don’t understand why they can’t do this. Or better, they can, but don’t want to. This is outright user hostile.


I would buy much more if I could try for a few days. I don’t understand why they can’t do this. Or better, they can, but don’t want to. This is outright user hostile.

Talk to your app maker, not Apple. Apple started allowing free trials last year:

"Non-subscription apps may offer a free time-based trial period before presenting a full unlock option by setting up a Non-Consumable IAP item at Price Tier 0 that follows the naming convention: “XX-day Trial.” Prior to the start of the trial, your app must clearly identify its duration, the content or services that will no longer be accessible when the trial ends, and any downstream charges the user would need to pay for full functionality."

https://developer.apple.com/app-store/review/guidelines/#pay...


That might negatively affect sales. Many people might want an app for a specific need, and once that need is gone, will never use the app again. Maybe instead of a free trial on a $1 app, it could be something like a 20 cent trial, and if you buy the app, you are credited your 20 cents.


The developer has control over the pricing model though right? For an app that solves a specific problem one time and then is useless, it would be foolish for a developer to offer a free trial. As far as I know Apple does not force free trials.


I spent money on android because the Google rewards program gives it in exchange for me filling out surveys ( I assume to verify their analytics) and I spent zero dollars on iOS.


I have this strange compulsion of liking to give companies money and they give me stuff instead of “collecting analytics.”


I prefer getting paid for my opinions. I'll gladly provide analytics for those who directly ask giving me the option to say I prefer not to answer.

There needs to be people like you to balance the costs for someone like myself because knowing my age, marriage status size of company isn't worth the amount they pay me for it.


They use those surveys to measure how well brand advertising is working. Brand advertising is where you try to get people to remember your brand, even if they don't buy a product right away.

They'll show you 5 ads for a brand of car, and then a few weeks later ask which brand of car you have heard of for example. They also ask people who haven't seen the ads for comparison.

That data is used by Google to demonstrate how valuable their ads are.

They only need a small percentage of people to answer the survey to get results across the whole population.


I'm not sure what the mental block is for people. A $5 app is considered premium, and that's what plenty of people spend on coffee on their way to work every day.


I hear this all the time, like somehow the only factor in the propositions is economic.

When someone spends $5 on coffee, they know exactly what they are getting, it’s a regular purchase, produced by a formulaic method, with consistent quality, that energises them for the day ... that also hooks into their biochemistry and there’s a certain about of conditioning / addictive behaviour there too.

Compare that to the purchase of an app. There’s no biochemical enhancement, the quality of apps varies wildly and is unpredictable until after purchase, there’s little / no ability to refund. There’s no addictive hook to buy an app (I know some apps are addictive - that’s different)

How are those propositions even nearly close? The decision to purchase is not purely economic.


I think this hits close to home for a lot of people. It's not about the small amount of money to pay for the app, mostly what stops me is that I don't know what I'm getting for that $5. It feels like I'm potentially throwing money down the drain.

I've also paid for games apps (the most was around $20, I would pay more). I'd like to pay "premium" $ for a premium product on the app store, but I generally don't see that as an option. Periodically, I'll glance at the games available on the iOS store and the quality is night and day compared to PC/console.

Maybe people think apps are not worth buying because they're charging pennies? What happened to making a solid product and not being afraid to charge for it?


I'm not sure there's so much overlap between those 2 groups.

I don't buy 5$ apps and I also don't buy 5$ coffees.

Also I notice that I hardly ever use the apps I test (why do I even have this smartphone?) so the coffee would absolutely bring much more joy than the app, in 90% of the time - and that's from someone who doesn't regularly consume coffee outside of home and office (i.e. relatively cheap)


On average, I might have to buy 4 apps and spend 15 minutes fiddling around with each to find one I like in that category. So that's $20 plus an hour of my time. The good apps basically have to subsidize all the crap.


Can't pirate a coffee. I'm from the billion dollar iPod generation. Paying for software just feels weird.


I wonder what the median amount is. Is the distribution of revenue heavily lopsided to the whales?


I recall reading that some game companies have teams dedicated to catering to individual whales.


definitely true, some friends of mine are in the mobile gaming space and it's ridiculous. Some companies even have a direct line to their biggest spenders to put in features, skins, etc.


Casinos do the same with people who gamble a lot. They call them high rollers.


The median is certainly lower than $79, and may even be $0.


I think it would be if more people realized you can have an iTunes account without a credit card attached. They seem to make it harder with every UX change to set up, but if you don’t have a payment method you can’t give them a penny.


I don't think it is zero if uber and lyft count.


The article is about app and in-app purchases that Apple gets a cut from. Lyft and Uber are in different category and don't pay any fees to Apple on ride purchases.


Just to add a bit of info... in-app purchases are required for things like extra functionality. On the other hand, if you’re using the app as a gateway to a service that is provided outside of the app, you can process payment outside the app. Anyone who can reasonably make this argument tends to do so, as Apple charges ~30% of everything that goes through in-app purchases.


What apps are in the gray area? To me it’s pretty clear and not much room for “making an argument.”


The details of the report say that games spending is more than 50% of in-app spending... so yes, it's game IAPs thus whales.


While I spent a fair bit using app services (Uber, lime primarily), I've just thought about it and realised I'm a heavy mobile phone user but have spent < $10 in total on apps in the last 7 years of being an Android phone user. As a fellow app developer that makes me feel pretty guilty but there's always a free version of whatever I need and I don't play any games.

Is there any must have quality paid apps out there anybody suggests?


On Android, the average spend per user is much much lower, partly because the audience is different, but also because free Android apps tend to be much better than free iOS apps.

There are lots of things on iOS you can't do without some paid app. Even silly things like "make my voice sound like Micky mouse on phone calls" is a paid app on iOS.


I wonder how much of this is the recent push by many devs for subscription apps, and, to go with that, what the breakdown is of the actual subscription apps vs people preemptively buying other apps to avoid future subscriptions.


How much of this was due to Fortnite I wonder?


$0.00. Fortnite bypasses Apple IAP.


Boxed software used to cost that much or more each. $79/year is meager.


Boxed software, as in productivity software that you might well use for your job? Well yes.

Even looking at something like games though, deflation is reasonable. That game I bought in the 90s

A. Probably still works now, isn't reliant on external servers. So cost/year is still lower.

B. Was resalable if I didn't like it.

C. Faced a lot less competition.


That seems kind of crazy actually. I maybe spent $10 over the past year on apps, if that. I don't need yet another notetaking app, and I refuse to be bled dry by subscriptions.


How much of this is due to people not upgrading to new iPhones as the OS got optimized and they got free batteries - people spend more money when they have more left.


I would love to hear success stories of indie app makers. There must still be a sizeable long tail of indie made apps that people are buying...


I was reading Indie Hackers the other day and came across https://www.indiehackers.com/interview/turning-a-small-app-f...


Why don't we wait to see the actual report? This article seems like the cart leading the horse.


Yeah well that's TechCrunch.


As someone who has never once paid for an app or paid for in-app purchases, nor do I allow apps that show ads, I find this staggering.

It’s not a judgment or anything. Just the idea of this is so bewildering and alien to me.


As a developer who gets paid to write code, when I find an app I really like, I also pay for it, if it seems reasonable.

Like Overcast for podcasts, Nlog Synthesizer for use with my Korg nanokey for on-the-go music composition, filimic pro forr video and others.


Recently saw Overcast mentioned here. Tried it out and it’s exactly what’s needed. Much better than the mess Apple Podcasts has become.


Plus Smart Speed is fantastic. I can listen to podcasts more quickly without actually speeding up the speech.


I am already nervous that Overcast will add more features/redesigns and add social media until it turns into a mess like most other tools. Seems today's product development paradigm redesigns a project until the initial simplicity is gone.


Overcast's author, Marco Arment, seems pretty clear in his design approach for Overcast (I listen to Accidental Tech Podcast, on which he's a host). He's pretty resistant to things to don't help the core experience of listening to podcasts. For example, he's put a bunch of time into the basic audio features and making watch playback work well, rather than lots of flashy GUI things.


We have different hobbies, but as a supporter of free software and a developer who works on open source code 99% of the time, I try and use open source apps as much as possible.

I recognise though that there are whole categories of app that need real money, for staff or servers (dating, online gaming).


I think there's just not really a way for high quality, user facing applications to be open source. And when you download free of charge proprietary apps, more often than not you're giving up your data/privacy as compensation.

There are plenty of really great, free software applications: VLC, Handbrake, Audacity, etc. But most of the free software world is not end user applications. It's the OS, HTTP server, and other infrastructure software. The software that is open source is the software that big companies need, but it's not their main product. So they can justify paying employees to contribute to it, and get the patches upstreamed.

I would definitely prefer my apps like Omnifocus or Overcast to open source. But even setting aside the financial viability, running an open source project opens you up to a million people flooding you with patch requests and flame wars. If you're developing a high quality app with opinionated UX and design, that's the last thing you want.


If a developer open sourced their application but still charged for the binary on the App Store, would you pay for it?


That's a lot more work on the developer to do that. They're going to get a million unwanted pull requests, code bike shedding, and issues raised. And they're also going to get dozens of people putting their own copies of the same app on the store to try to undercut them.

So why would any sane developer do that? Getting people to spend a few dollars on an app is already no easy feat. Most users think a five dollar app is outrageously expensive.


Yeah. If I don't expect to make changes to the application and only act as a consumer, then it makes more sense economically for me to pay so I can download it and get updates without having to compile it and load it on my device every time.

Also, isn't it nice to help developers that make nice applications, especially when they offer their apps for a reasonable price?


100% yes. We need more nice applications made by indie developers and small agencies. Apps that charge a couple of dollars, or even a modest subscription fee, and don’t harvest their users data, record their screens for marketing purposes, or run the microphone to build an advertising profile.

I don’t understand how, on a forum full of people who build software for a living, there can be so much opposition to this idea.


Most open source enthusiasts get apps from fdroid which does not support paid apps but it does have a donate button on the page. I only use open source and I have donated to the apps I use most.


Do you also take care that upstream isn't forced to focus somewhere else to actually pay their bills?


If I find an app I really like, I usually buy it. Especially upgrades to pro versions to unlock the full feature set.

Polished, well made apps are absolutely worth the price.

I don't get what's so hard to comprehend. It's a store. There are lots of apps worth paying for.


What I mean is that I’ve never found a case where a purchase was required to get a quality app for some use case. I have a lot of apps on my devices, they are just all free apps with no ads and data collection disabled, presumably made by hobbyists who find that either the projects help promote them to get jobs or just find the satisfaction to be reason enough, and don’t seek financial compensation.

Given how ubiquitous free, non-ad-based apps are, it’s surprising to me to hear that people prefer different paid apps more to such a degree that the average spend is about $80.

Looking in the data it’s heavily skewed by gaming apps, so I’m guessing that is what drives my surprise. The average dollar spend on other types of apps is much lower. I suppose gaming is an area where it’s harder to find free, no-ad apps.

But for music, video, photography, podcasts, writing, sports, productivity, security, banking, etc., there are such high quality free apps without ads that I don’t get it.


Am guessing you use a computer for most of your work, and you have bought software for that? And maybe you play video games on a dedicated system, for which you have bought software?

It's mainly different use cases. I do a lot of work on ipad and iphone, so I have paid apps for those. Others like games on them, so they spend there, etc

If you're on android, it's also just a very different app ecosystem, so it's harder to think about how the other side does it.


Likewise, I have never spent a dime on an app, however I do allow ads to play if it's not obtrusive otherwise I just uninstall app. I also don't use Uber or anything of that nature. As a NY resident the subway is my saving grace. I also cook and package my lunch to work


As someone that likes to be paid to develop software, I also buy my tools and software from other fellow devs.

For FOSS stuff, I regularly donate either directly, or by buying books and merchandise from project.


Not even an Uber or Lyft? Never purchased a product through Amazon or similar? You've never had to enter your credit number into your phone to be used in any way?


The article is about app and in-app purchases that Apple gets a cut from. They don't get a cut from physical products or services (e.g. Lyft, Amazon etc).


I wonder if they do strictly mean iPhone or if that also includes iPad sales. I know I've spent more than $79 on iPad software which some I can also use on iPhone.


Does this count Spotify and Netflix and other subscriptions offered via IAP?


Yes, I think this counts IAP subscriptions. Note that Netflix just stopped accepting payment that way, though, so for 2019 Apple's results will no longer include Netflix subscriptions.


.


Yes developers install this: https://sensortower.com

And my guess is, similar to polling, that the company predicts from the data they do have.


What if this is partly due to non-spenders downloading less apps?


I've spent probably tens of thousands of dollars on mobile games.

(I posted this as a counter-example to all the "This is baffling. I wouldn't spend a single dollar on apps." comments here.)


I have two conflicting stereotypes: on one hand I assumed people spending that much on mobile games would be uneducated, on the other hand I also assume people on HN are more educated than average.

Thanks for making me coming out of it.

So, now, you made me curious. How did that happen ?


It depends on what game. Note that these are not just pointless money-grabbers but games I actually enjoy a lot and have played for years.

In some it's the feeling of becoming powerful. In some it's out of frustration knowing it would take days doing something I can spend a few bucks on to skip. In others it's about collecting stuff. And in some it's solely about supporting the creators.

I also use it as a kind of reward. I treat myself with a big legendary chest.

With that said, I'm 100% guilty of falling for the artificial sensation they've manufactured with all the animations, sound effects and deals they put in front of me. These companies are experts on making IAPs "feel good".

Finally, I have a lot of money (made a big exit) so it's not really a big deal for me.


For 10,000$ you can make a lot of "feel good" things happen in the real world.

https://watsi.org/

https://kiva.org/

https://zidisha.org/

https://milaap.org/


I spend way more on charity but thank you.


Thanks a lot for the raw honesty.


You're a whale! I'm not saying that in a disparaging way, just that your nickname is probably pinned to quite a few Silicon Valley whiteboards.

"How can we get more users like Kiro?" "How can we get Kiro to spend even more in 2019?"


You're probably not wrong.


I want to see what the App store whales spent.


I checked my last years spend and it was $2.


Zero dollars from me. I buy plenty of software for desktops/laptops but have yet to find any app worth real money. But i dont play mobile games, at least beyond sodoku. Freemium games are probably the real driver. 75$/year is about how much i spent on NES games back in the day.


There are a ton of apps that are "expensive", but worth it. Omnifocus, Overcast, Soulver, 1Password, Blink, Working Copy, Coda, Procreate, LumaFusion, Affinity Photo, etc.

People spend upwards of $1000 on a phone, but are unwilling to spend a couple bucks on good software for it. It's ridiculous.


I agree. For me it isn’t even that - if an app can save me 5 minutes of time per week it is easily worth $5. Or if it is an app I use every day, if the experience is that much better it is worth the subscription to me.




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