There will be more apps, free and paid, in the Android Market than in Apple’s App Store by the end of September. Already the number of free Android applications tops the App Store with 134,342 compared with 121,845. By September, according to calculations by Distimo, the Android Market will be the biggest overall, followed by Apple’s App Store, Windows Phone 7 Marketplace, BlackBerry App World and Nokia Ovi Store.
Many of the top publishers on the iPad already work cross-platform. Over half of the most popular App Store publishers have already developed applications for non-Apple platforms. Says Distimo:
One year after launching the iPad, Apple will be confronted with its first serious competition as both BlackBerry and Google enter the emerging tablet market. Apple has already seized momentum and grown the App Store for iPad in the first year to 75,755 applications developed by 21,975 publishers. Daily downloads in the Top 100 Overall paid and free applications for iPad combined exceed 500,000, while the daily revenue in the Top 100 paid is approximately $400,000 excluding in-app purchases.
None of this is very remarkable or unexpected since it has always been clear that Android, at least in the foreseeable future, would become the dominant market by number. Yet size is not always best, as we all know. Apple will continue to be profitable and, I suggest, will be seen as a premium, aspirational brand. The Apple ecosystem is ring-fenced and controlled to a much greater degree than that of any other and, I feel sure, this is a positive rather than a negative aspect.
Unlike the PC market, where Apple lost the initiative to Windows and have had a painful climb back to financial supremacy, Cupertino have led the way in mobile computing. While Apple’s phone and tablet market share will shrink, there is still a lot of room for expansion in terms of sales and profit.