"They take my money/when I'm in neeeed/Yeah they're trifling friends indeed/Oh yeah they're some gold diggers/way over town/that dig on me." The lyrics above are my modest attempt to tweak the opening words of "Gold Digger," a song by Kanye West that was originally about a certain kind of woman but could now be better aimed at mobile game developers in general.
In-app purchases (IAPs) will overtake all other methods of making money in apps by 2018, when looking at combined revenue across key countries, according to IDC and App Annie. The two firms published their joint Mobile App Advertising and Monetization Trends report by looking at data from 2013 and forecasting three years ahead.
Apple put a lot of new things into the market this year--the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, the iPad Air 2 and plans for an Apple Watch--but 2014 will also mark the moment it took out something important: the word "free" from its App Store.
While nearly half of all consumers are willing to pay a monthly subscription for an app they love, nearly as many said they would be willing to pay less than $25 a month, according to a recent study from Branchfire.
Women make 31 percent more in-app purchases than men, according to a recent report from Flurry. Following the surprise success of the game Kim Kardashian: Hollywood, the analytics firm decided to dig deeper into gender differences across a variety of mobile gaming factors.
Even if they're guilty of occasionally abusing in-app purchase tools, most app developers probably aren't keeping up with the Kardashians from a monetization perspective.
As had been expected, the Federal Trade Commission sued Amazon, alleging that the online retailer made it too easy for children to make millions of dollars' worth of unauthorized in-app purchases on its Kindle tablet devices. The FTC wants to make Amazon refund money spent without parental permission and to stop Amazon from allowing in-app purchases without requiring a password or other mechanism that gives parents more control.
As developers have shifted away from a monetization model based on paid downloads to "freemium" or free to play approaches, many of them are looking at in-app purchasing (IAP) as a better way to create a revenue stream for their work. However, there's one major concern that could drag on both big and small app vendors: in-app fraud. Special report
Amazon said it is prepared to go to court with the Federal Trade Commission rather than submit to increased oversight and other measures the FTC says are needed to ensure children do not make unauthorized in-app purchases from apps in Amazon's Appstore.
It's becoming conventional wisdom that paid downloads are out and the freemium model is here to stay, but half of the revenue from in-app purchases come from a meager 0.15 percent, according to Swrve's Mobile Games Monetization Report.