The number of mobile app publishers that recorded $ 1 million or more in annual net income in 2022 has almost doubled since 2016.
According to Sensor Tower data, just over 900 publishers worldwide are expected to take this step on the App Store and Google Play in 2021.
This is an increase of about 91% from the total of 475 in 2016.
The number of iOS publishers crossing this bar will reach 581, up 87% from 310 in 2016. A similar trend can be seen on Google Play, where the platform’s top publishers reach over $ 1 million. went from 165 in 2016 to 325 this year. year. That’s a 97% increase, beating the App Store‘s performance in this regard by 6 percentage points.
As consumer spending continued to post positive growth, the number of publishers crossing the million dollar net income milestone for the first time this year is expected to decline year-over-year in 2021, according to The report.
“This is likely due to the result of the normalization of consumer behavior following a disproportionate year for new app downloads in 2020. Based on our installation estimates, consumers have experienced fewer new apps this year. year than last year, resulting in a staggering adoption. at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, ”said Sensor Tower.
636 publishers reached or exceeded $ 1 million in annual net revenue for the first time in 2020 on the App Store. That number is expected to drop nearly 9% in 2021. Google Play recorded 367 publishers surpassing this milestone last year. With that, the total in 2021 will be 11% lower than that figure.
Additionally, while more publishers have historically earned their first million dollars or more in net income from the App Store each year, the gap between Apple’s App Store and Google Play is narrowing.
The delta between the two markets was at its peak in 2017. The App Store produced 2.7 times the number of Google Play in 2017. However, the Apple Store will produce around 1.8 times as many publishers earning 1 million dollars for the first time Google. year.
“This trend reflects the increased speed of overall consumer spending on Google’s platform,” according to the report.
Consumers are expected to spend around $ 47.9 billion in 2021 on Google Play, up 23.5% year-over-year. That’s nearly 6 percentage points higher than Apple’s growth which is expected to be around 17.7% this year, with iOS consumer spending reaching around $ 85.1 billion.
Best app categories
“Mobile game publishers have historically accounted for the largest share of the first million dollar winners on the App Store,” according to the report.
185 mobile game publishers are expected to earn $ 1 million or more from the App Store in 2021. This is almost 32% of the platform’s total new revenue of over $ 1 million.
The Social Media and Entertainment categories are expected to take second and third places.
Of the new million dollars in revenue, 62 are in the social media category, which is 11 percent, while entertainment is expected to see 41 publishers, or about 7 percent.
Productivity and sports are expected to register the strongest year-on-year growth. 21 publishers in the Productivity category recorded net sales of $ 1 million for the first time in 2020. It is expected to increase by 6% this year to 34. The number of publishers reaching the milestone in the Sports category is expected to drop from five in 2020 to 18 in 2021, or about 3 percent.
On Google Play, like the App Store, mobile game publishers historically represent the lion’s share of new publishers reaching the milestone in any given year.
139 publishers are expected to reach this milestone in 2021, representing 43% of all publishers who will do so for the first time.
It is followed by the Social category where 36 publishers are expected to do so, around 11% of the total, while Entertainment will come third with 32, or around 10%.
The number of communications app publishers out of the total saw the strongest growth in 2021 compared to 2020 at around 84%, from six to 11 for around 3.4% of the total.
Even though the App Store maintains its lead in first-time publisher output at over $ 1 million each year, consumer spending on Google Play is growing at a faster rate.
“However, even bigger changes are coming to the mobile market, with changes in the share of revenue collected by platform owners that could be rolled out next year with more third-party payment options. will tell us how this will affect publishers on Apple and Google’s platforms and which developers will be able to reap the benefits, ”Sensor Tower added.