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March 19, 2022

Canadians pay top dollar for mobile apps

North American consumers pay much more for mobile phone applications than people in any part of the world, according to a new study by wireless consultant Chetan Sharma.

Last year, smart phone users paid roughly $1.90 per app, compared with less than 20 cents in many other regions where developers are still struggling to effectively monetize app momentum, the study says.

The good news: Between now and 2012, mobile app prices are forecast to decrease by roughly a third, Sharma predicts, largely because of the anticipated increase in volume.

The number of apps downloaded onto handsets is expected to increase to nearly 50 billion in 2012, compared to just over 7 billion downloads in 2009. 

In fact, analysts at Yankee Group are forecasting a mobile app “gold rush,” saying that revenue from U.S. downloads alone would reach nearly $1.6 billion this year as consumers become increasingly comfortable with shelling out a couple of bucks to try something out.

Among their findings: Nearly a third of all apps downloaded today are purchased, compared with 18 per cent a year ago.

“I think you'll see similarities to the trajectory of the Web. There'll be millions and millions of apps, and the cream will rise to the top,” Boyd Cohen, CEO of Vancouver-based developer 3rdWhale Mobile, told the Globe and Mail.

Cohen predicts that app developers will soon build in a single code base so their apps can be easily available in multiple platforms, which could further affect pricing.

And if you’re interested in bring your own idea to market, check out your prospects with this report from Flurry, a New York-based mobile analytics firm.

What’s a fair price for an iPhone app? How do you know you’re getting your money’s worth?

By Gordon Powers, MSN Money



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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...

Jason BucklandJason Buckland

The modern-day MC Hammer of money, Jason can often be seen spending cash that isn’t his with the efficiency of a Wilt Chamberlain first date. After cutting his teeth as a reporter for the Toronto Sun, he joined the MSN Money team with...