Pokemon Go sure is popular. So popular it set a new iTunes App Store record.
Apple on Friday confirmed Pokemon Go was downloaded more times in its first week than any other app in history. The company declined to give an official tally on the number of downloads or say which app previously held the record.
Pokemon Go has become a cultural phenomenon since it launched July 6 in the US. The free mobile game lets users see tiny creatures called Pokemon through their phones, as if they existed in the real world. It has gotten people to rack up miles of walking in an effort to catch them all. It took Pokemon Go only four days to become the No. 1 free app in the US App Store.
App analytics company Sensor Tower said earlier this week that the app from Nintendo and Niantic has been downloaded more than 30 million times on iOS and Android and has earned more than $35 million in revenue. It's used more daily than some of the world's most established apps, including Facebook.
And financial firm Needham on Wednesday estimated Pokemon Go could add $3 billion to Apple's sales over the next 12 to 24 months. Two-thirds of all Pokemon Go downloads are on iOS devices, and Needham estimated about 80 percent of the in-app spending -- to buy things like lucky eggs, lures and extra storage -- is taking place on iOS devices.
The popularity of Pokemon Go comes as reports point to a slowdown in the market for apps. Data from sources like Sensor Tower have shown the number of downloads for top apps has declined, and few people are seeking out new apps beyond the offerings they use most often. Pokemon Go has been a notable exception to that trend.
Apple made some changes to its App Store in early June, including approving apps more quickly and letting all apps sell subscriptions. It also will lower the cut it gets for app subscriptions. If an app maker holds onto a subscriber for a year or longer, Apple's cut will shrink to 15 percent from its prior level of 30 percent.
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