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2013 App Report: iOS 7 made my app obsolete, downloads are down 50% but it’s making more money than ever.. WTF

successkidIn March of 2013 I released my first app, Photo Date, which shows you the date and time your iPhone photos were taken.  Admittedly it’s a very simple app, but after years of brainstorming ideas and never actually following through, I decided it was time to take action and just launch something.

However not long after that, in September, iOS7 was released which has the date functionality built in.. effectively making my app obsolete.

I expected downloads to drop significantly after that.. which they have, by about 50%.  So I expected revenue to drop as well – but I just had my biggest month in revenue – 3 months AFTER the release of iOS7.

2013 revenue

My iAd report for the year

Downloads over time

My download report for 2013. Downloads peaked in August at 12,000 and closed out December with around 5,000

I believe this is happening for 2 reasons:

  • Many people still haven’t updated to iOS7 either because they don’t have enough empty storage space on their device or they just don’t want to upgrade.  Apple says that 26% of iPhone users are still on iOS6 or under. Which is good for me, but this percentage will drop significantly over the next year as more people upgrade.
  • iAd eCPM’s are much higher than earlier in the year – possibly due to Christmas and end of year advertising.

Below we see the numbers for just December:

December ecpm

 

These numbers make me feel better about pursuing advertising route versus paid downloads because if I had chosen to charge per download revenue would be down more than 50% rather than this month being my most profitable to date.

Here are my final numbers for 2013.  Keep in mind that I didn’t launch until March and didn’t have advertising enabled until April.

2013 Downloads: 67,899

2013 Revenue: $548

2013 Expenses: $150 for development + $99 for Apple’s Developers license fee (mandatory for publishing on the app store) = $249

What’s next?

I’ve started plans for my next app and I’m also putting the finishing touches on a course for Skillshare.com that will help anyone successfully launch their first app— specifically those who:

  • lack technical skills and
  • have little money to invest

I’ve created a quick and easy step-by-step method for how to build your first app without coding experience and for very little money – then I’ll show you exactly how I grew Photo Date to 65,000+ downloads, made it profitable, and how you can do the same.

If you’re interested in learning more and want first access to the course when it’s released towards the end of January sign up here

 

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