Apple customers downloaded more than 5 million games each day in March from the company's App Store, say market researchers Distimo and Newzoo, and that's just among the 63 million users tracked for a recent survey.
Combining their individual data for a single report, Distimo and Newzoo found that games are the single biggest category of apps on Apple's App Store, accounting for half of all downloads of both free and paid apps. Tracking a total of 63 million iOS users in March across the U.S. and six countries in Europe, the two research firms discovered that each user downloaded on average 2.5 games for the month.
Based on Newzoo's National Gamers Survey, between 6 and 7 percent of online users in the U.S., U.K, France, and Germany own an iPhone. That number drops to between 3 and 4 percent in the Netherlands and Belgium. But overall, the percentage of iPhone owners who play iOS games is between 50 percent and 75 percent. Further, almost 15 million gamers in America and 7 million in Europe who play games on mobile devices use an iPad.
Just like in-app purchases have generated more revenue for app developers, in-game purchases have kicked up more cash for game makers. Although about 88 percent of the top 300 downloaded games are free, in-game purchases within both free and paid games brought in around two-fifths of total revenue for developers. In-game purchases on free games accounted for 40 percent of total sales from iPhone and iPod Touch owners and 32 percent from iPad users, according to the report.