Apple 2.0

Covering the business that Steve Jobs built

iPhone apps: 300 million downloads in 21 weeks

December 5, 2008: 4:08 PM ET

App store ad (2)Apple (AAPL) buried the news in small print at the bottom of the full-page ad that appeared Friday in the New York Times and the Wall St. Journal.

The headline said something about solving life's dilemmas one iPhone app at a time. What it didn't say was that the iTunes App Store this week passed two impressive milestones: 1) the 10,000-plus applications that are now available on the store, and 2) the more than 300 million apps that iPhone and iPod touch users have downloaded.

Given that the App Store opened for business only 21 weeks ago, that works out to an average of better than 2 million downloads per day.

Only Apple knows for sure what percentage of those downloads were freebies. But we do know, thanks to 148Apps' tribute page, that the average cost of an iPhone app is $3.06, which means that the store's total revenue so far is probably less than $1 billion. (Silicon Alley Insider estimates that it's closer to $300 million, of which Apple takes a 30% cut.)

Still. No bad for a platform that's less than four months old.

See also 10,000 iPhone apps - for real this time.

Thanks to CNBC's Jim Goldman for the tip and Macworld's Jim Dalrymple for the image.

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About This Author
Philip Elmer-Dewitt
Philip Elmer-DeWitt
Editor, Apple 2.0, Fortune

Philip Elmer-DeWitt has been following Apple since 1982, first for Time Magazine, and now on the Web for Fortune.com.

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