A new research suggests that Apple's App Store is populated by many "zombie" programs which get next-to-no downloads. Figures indicate that over two-thirds of apps in the store are barely ever installed by consumers. However Apple has said that 90% of all apps in the marketplace, which is marking its five-year anniversary, are downloaded at least once a month.
Apple boss Tim Cook said the store had "fundamentally changed the world". Speaking to app developers at the firm's recent developer's conference, the chief executive said, "Customers love the buying experience and they love your incredible apps. And they have now downloaded 50 billion apps. "That's a lot of zeros and a truly staggering number."
But US firm's app store, which has about 900,000 products, has left many developers struggling to get noticed. "579,001 apps out of a total of 888,856 apps in our database are zombies," the analytics firm said. It defines zombies as apps which never appear in Apple's master-list of the most downloaded apps worldwide, a chart which runs to over 300,000 places. "We can't say exactly how many downloads they have, Apple doesn't reveal this, but it is very small."
Another survey conducted indicated that some 68% of smartphone owners used five or fewer apps on a weekly basis, with many of their other "impulse" buys losing their appeal almost instantly. Zombies aside, the launch of the App Store in 2008 is widely regarded as a game-changing moment for how we consume technology. It has inspired other companies to follow suit, with Google, Microsoft and Blackberry among those to have launched their own stores.
Apple says it has paid out $10bn (£7bn) to app developers, three times more, it boasts, than all the other app stores combined. The "app economy" has also been responsible for disrupting the video games industry. Companies such as EA have shifted to offering downloads of many of their titles for free, and make money through in-app purchases for power-ups and other add-ons. They do charge an upfront fee which is still relatively cheap.
In particular, the popularity of Rovio's Angry Birds, which has made millions through franchising and merchandise sales, has made other games developers stand-up and take notice, and to consider if the established model of charging £30 or more for console and PC titles could become a thing of the past. Even so, the development has not been without controversy. Apple, which takes a 30% cut of all sales through its online marketplace, was recently forced to offer refunds to parents who had found themselves with unexpectedly high bills as a result of in-app payments by their children.
List of Famous apps
Following is the App Store's paid-for iPhone apps list:-
Cut the Rope
Angry Birds Seasons
Words with Friends
Angry Birds Space
The most popular free iPhone apps are:
Words With Friends Free
The Weather Channel