Mobile-app revenue could reach $35 billion by 2014

Market research firm IDC expects nearly 11 billion mobile applications will have been downloaded this year, and sees that figure jumping to nearly 77 billion in 2014.

If you think mobile applications are popular now, a new report predicts you haven't seen anything yet.

This year, consumers worldwide will have downloaded 10.9 billion mobile apps, according to a report from IDC released today. But that figure will pale in comparison to how many apps users download in 2014.

By that time, IDC believes 76.9 billion mobile apps will be downloaded in a single year. Given that popularity, IDC said that mobile-app revenue around the world could surpass $35 billion in 2014, up from an estimated $4.9 billion this year.

Going forward, IDC said that it believes "appification" of a user's personal and professional life will only continue.

"Mobile app developers will 'appify' just about every interaction you can think of in your physical and digital worlds," Scott Ellison, vice president of IDC's Mobile and Wireless research, said in a statement. "The extension of mobile apps to every aspect of our personal and business lives will be one of the hallmarks of the new decade with enormous opportunities for virtually every business sector."

Evidently, Angry Birds creator Rovio sees that potential for future growth, as well. The company announced last week that it would be launching a new in-app payment system next year, called Bad Piggy Bank. It didn't divulge how it would share revenue with developers, but the company said that it would provide users with a one-tap purchase system that requires no credit card or registration. Instead, the consumer will be charged for the purchase on their monthly phone bill.

Earlier this year, mobile-app store GetJar commissioned a study that offered up another rosy picture of the future of the mobile-apps business. The company found that total downloads could reach 50 billion in 2012, while revenue could climb to $17.5 billion that year.

About the author

Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.

 

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