App Store gross revenue over $64 billion in 2020, says CNBC

App Store
App Store (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • CNBC estimates Apple's App Store grossed over $64 billion in revenue last year.
  • That would mean growth of 28% on 2019.

A new report from CNBC estimates that Apple's App Store grossed over $64 billion in 2020.

From the report:

Apple's App Store grossed more than $64 billion in 2020, according to an analysis by CNBC.That's up from an estimated $50 billion in 2019 and $48.5 billion in 2018, according to the same analysis, suggesting that App Store sales growth accelerated strongly during the Covid-19 pandemic, as people sheltered at home and spent more time and money on apps and games.

The report says App Store revenue grew by 28% in 2020, a huge increase on 3.1% growth in 2019. Here's how the figure was calculated:

Apple doesn't disclose how much revenue its App Store makes per year. Instead, since 2013, it has released data points in January that includes the total that Apple has paid to developers since the beginning of the App Store in 2008.Using those numbers, it's possible to back out roughly how much revenue the App Store generated based on how much Apple paid to developers in any given year. According to a press release on Wednesday, Apple has paid developers $200 billion since 2008, up $45 billion from the figure that was announced in January 2020. If that's equal to 70% of App Store sales, then the App Store grossed around $64 billion last year.

In a press release earlier this week Apple said that consumers had spent $1.8 billion on digital goods between Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve, and a record $540 million New Year's Day alone. As CNBC notes, Apple also says developers have now earned some $200 billion since the App Store's launch in 2008.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.

Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9