UPDATE: As of about 4:30pm ET, the App Store seems to be working again and Apple's Service page reports that it's running. Back to promoting those apps, everyone -- with an eye on the stability of the app store, just to be safe. Original post below.
The App Store is already buzzing this holiday season, with our latest index showing app downloads hit an all-time high in October. Tracking the average aggregate daily download volume of the top 200 free iOS apps, the App Store Competitive Index reached 7.8 million downloads. This was an incredible 42 percent rise over last month, and a 39 percent increase over 2013. The release of the iPhone 6 and availability of iOS 8 undoubtedly led to this high volume of activity as users updated their new devices with their favorite apps.
This month’s Fiksu Index showed app marketing costs hit an all-time high. Following the launches of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus and Apple iOS 8 release, the cost for marketers to acquire loyal users (CPLU) reached $2.25. CPLU increased 21 percent from August, and 34 percent since September 2013. Taking a peek at the increasing costs to acquire loyal users over a two-year time period (2012-2014), we see an upward sloping trend line – demonstrating that marketers continue to face an environment of increasing costs and competitive forces.
August was a ‘lazy’ month for vacationers, app users, and for app marketers, demonstrated by lowered app install activity on both iOS and Android and lower marketing spends. The Cost Per Loyal User (CPLU) Index, which measures the cost of acquiring a loyal user for brands who actively market their apps, came in at $1.86, representing a 6 percent decrease from last month’s index.
August has been a pretty slow month for mobile app marketing in recent years, but this year went a different direction. Not only did our July indexes reach impressive heights, but Apple also introduced a new wrinkle to its ranking algorithm all while gearing up for its annual launch of new eye-catching gadgets. So much excitement, that we almost missed the coveted Index post!
Mobile marketers have quickly realized the reach of Facebook’s mobile app install ad units and their ability to cost-efficiently drive volumes of users — and the latest Fiksu Indexes certainly reflect this trend.
Following a steady couple of months, April saw competition – and costs - heating up for mobile app marketers. The Fiksu Cost per Loyal User Index reached $1.50, an increase of 10 percent, or 14 cents over March’s $1.36, while the App Store Competitive Index rose 11 percent, to 5.61 million daily downloads from 5.02 million in March.
After analyzing the data, it was clear to us that three distinct forces contributed to these dynamics in April:
The Apple App Store hits a new record – 40 billion downloads!
Recent reports indicate that Apple’s iOS tops 50 percent of U.S. smartphone sales, up nearly 36 percent from last year, achieving the highest percentage of sales in the American market to date.
Expect to see many more tablets in the workplace this year as the BYOD (bring your own device) trend adds more personal tabets to the business environment and companies seek to purchase these devices over computers.