One of the very few highlight of an otherwise arduous tax season is adding up all the iTunes receipts in my inbox and finding out how much I spent on iOS and Mac App Store apps the previous year. For 2012, that number turned out to be something just north of $1800.
The most expensive was Lightroom at $150, which turned into $175 after Quebec and Canada were done with it. The least expensive, of course, were just $0.99. Remarkably little went to in-app purchases, almost none to in-app game purchases.
Obviously, I'm not still using all the apps I bought last year. Some were for very specific uses, and those uses are done. Others were simply to try out. The paid apps I stuck with, and still use the most, include Launch Center Pro, Tweetbot for iPad, Tweetbot for Mac Fantastical for iPhone, Letterpress, Coda 2 Diet Coda, Paper, and Drafts for iPhone, Drafts for iPad, and, of course, OS X Mountain Lion.
I don't regret buying any of them, however. Not any more than I regret buying a TV show or movie I watch only once or a few times, or a fussy caffeinated beverage I enjoy for a moment and is then gone forever. Apps almost always save me far more time than they cost me money, and as experiences go, games are both among the most incredible money can buy, and these days, among the cheapest.
I still wish developers would Jury-up and charge more, and users would pay more, and Apple allowed for demos or trials or a short grace period for refunds so it would take the risk out of developers charging more appropriate prices for their work. Absent all that, I'll likely be once again stuffing $10 into their pockets come WWDC so they can make me more fantastic apps and I can sleep better at night.
If you have a rough idea how much you spent on apps last year, let me know, and let me know which ones you're still using, and whether or not you plan to do anything differently this year?