FORTUNE -- The floodgates officially opened on Thursday Oct. 15, 2009. That's when Apple (AAPL) sent a letter to iPhone developers telling them they could adopt a new business model: Give away their apps and make their money selling extras -- new characters, faster cars, better weapons, stronger magic, more gold, etc.
The model was so successful that it led to a class action suit by the parents of kids who'd racked up huge bills behind their backs -- like the 5-year-old in Britain who recently spent $2,500 on a game he thought was free. (Apple settled the lawsuit, changed its password rules, added a warning and refunded the $2,500.)
But in-app purchases are here to stay for the reason best illustrated by the pie chart above, released Thursday by Distimo. It shows that in-app purchases in February accounted for a record of 76% of total iPhone App Store revenue in the U.S.
Moreover, it turns out Americans are relatively restrained compared with Asians. In Japan, the average revenue per download of the top grossing 250 games ($3.12) is more than three times higher than in the U.S. ($0.99). See the bar chart below:
Distimo's report is available for download as a pdf here.
1) 17 million iOS and Android devices activated; 2) App Store downloads up 87%
FORTUNE -- Given the blow-out iPhone and iPads sales Apple (AAPL) reported in its 2011 holiday quarter -- up 128% and 111% year over year, respectively -- the Wall Street analysts we've polled expect that breakneck growth to slow considerably in the quarter that ends Saturday. They think Apple's Q1 2013 is going to be what they call MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Dec 28, 2012 10:40 AM ET
Both now boast more than 700,000 apps, but Apple's store generates 4.3 times more cash
FORTUNE -- Manufacturers on Google's (GOOG) Android platform may be selling more devices, but Apple's (AAPL) App Store is still the best place to be for developers trying to make a living.
That's the bottom line in the year-end review published Friday by Distimo, a Dutch analytics company:
"On a typical day in November 2012, the revenues in the MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Dec 21, 2012 7:23 AM ET
A lot. Despite delayed launches, they download nearly as many iPad apps as U.S. users
The original iPad didn't go on sale on mainland China until September 2010, five months after its U.S. launch.
The iPad 2 arrived in May 2011, two months after its U.S. launch, and even then just in Wi-Fi-only versions.
The 3G iPad 2 finally launched in China in September, six months after it was available in the MORE
Out of 72,000 paid apps in Google's Android Market, only two have sold more than 500,000 copies
The Utrecht-based analytics company Distimo generated some catchy headlines last month with a report suggesting that Google's (GOOG) Android Market was rapidly catching up to Apple's (AAPL) App Store and might surpass it by July.
What that report didn't mention, as Roughly Drafted's Daniel Eran Dilger pointed out in a pungent analysis entitled "Distimo polishes MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - May 27, 2011 6:57 AM ET
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