The 7-Day $0.99 AppStore Pricing Experiment

Take your $5+ apps and put them on sale for $0.99 for a week, and see if cheap really does make it up on volume, and what do you get? Aside from a lot of iPhone media attention, pretty much a wash according the AppCubby:

People seem to think that there is unlimited demand for iPhone apps, but that's just not true. The time, attention, and discretionary income of iPhone and iPod Touch users ARE finite. They can only download and use so many apps in a single day. The published download numbers for the App Store are off the charts, but as I've pointed out before, those numbers are spread quite disproportionately among free apps and the top 50 paid apps. The harsh reality is that very few apps can "make it up on volume."

The post goes on to describe some of those harsh realities in more detail, and shares the developers thoughts on whether or not he'll keep with his current apps, or ditch it for high-volume, low-brow novelty CrApps. Definitely worth a read, especially by anyone who wants to see really innovative, really polished iPhone apps. Extra-especially by Apple.

Or is this just a bunch of crazy talk, and real iPhone users are happy with free/cheap iFartz! fun, premium apps be damed?

(Via Gadeon from Icon Factory on Twitter)

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Rene Ritchie

EiC of iMore, EP of Mobile Nations, Apple analyst, co-host of Debug, Iterate, Vector, Review, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Reader comments

The 7-Day $0.99 AppStore Pricing Experiment


iPhone apps should almost be looked at like a single on the music store.
I can only imagine that very few take a lot of time to develop - based on what I've bought and seen.
Sure, some are very good and likely took some real work, but many are throw-away and the finite life is not surprising.
Put some real effort into an original and well-done app, and it likely "lives" longer and makes more money.
Oh, and the 99¢ vs $5 thing in my mind has become a shill for "act now - this sale won't last long" You know - the stuff ShamWow is born from.
When I see that, I usually roll my eyes.

that's not a wash.
it is a revenue spike followed by a wash, which means the developer putting the app on sale generates extra money, and more people get to use the app.

I think he means that the spike may have come from all the publicity for his experiment, not necessarily from the sale. Hard to separate the two.

I better start seeing some premium apps! More productivity and functionality. I would pay the price for these things. It's great to have toys for my kids to play with during church but I need apps to help me in the business world. Apple better push for this or they will not be taken seriously in the corporate world.