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iPhone apps pricier than most

by Sarah Griffiths on 5 July 2010, 10:36

Tags: Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Google (NASDAQ:GOOG)

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Apple wins the battle with Android for hosting the most paid applications, which are also on the whole more expensive than its open source rival's. 

According to a report by Distimo, the iPad store boasts the largest percentage of paid-for apps, at 80%, with the iPhone commanding 73% of costly applications, in contrast to Google's Android store where the majority of apps are free.

A staggering 57% of Android's apps are free, yet Apple, whose Universal App Store provides just a quarter of its apps free, is not alone in charging for application extras. In fact, Windows Marketplace for Mobile has the smallest choice of free apps, which make up just over a fifth of its applications store.

The report surveyed: Apple App Store for iPad, the Apple App Store for iPhone, BlackBerry App World (Worldwide), Google Android Market, Nokia Ovi Store, Palm App Catalog and Windows Marketplace for Mobile in the US market in May this year.

It found Apple-ready applications generally fetch a higher price, with an average cost of just over $4, compared with the average price of an Android of $3.29. 

Interestingly, the average price of all paid applications and the 100 most popular paid applications in the Apple App Store for iPad is 64 cents higher than in the Apple App Store for iPhone at $4.65 and $4.01 respectively. However, the average price of the 100 top grossing applications is higher on the Apple App Store for iPhone.

Overall, more than half of all applications across the apps stores are priced below or at $2, with the exception of BlackBerry App World and Windows Marketplace for Mobile.

BlackBerry App World has the dubious honour of being the most expensive store, with many of its apps costing over $6, followed closely by the Windows offering with apps frequently commanding around $5. Bargain hunters will appreciate Palm's App Catalog, which gives users change for $3 on average for its paid-for apps.

Thanks to the built in Accelerometer and giro, the iPhone has carved a niche in the smartphone market as being gaming-friendly.  In fact, nine out of the ten most popular free applications and eight out of the ten most popular paid apps in the Apple App Store are games. 

In stark contrast, games do not figure at all in the Android's top ten apps, but owners of BlackBerry or Windows phones are more likely to download free or paid game apps.



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