There are now millions of mobile applications running on the popular mobile operating systems. Mobile applications are distributed via app stores which provide directory and search services that assist users in identify and acquiring the apps they most desire.
This report provides a summary of the status of app stores in the market today. It presents a number of features common to all app stores. The major apps stores are then described by one of three groupings: 1) consumer, 2) enterprise and 3) independent. The business model for app stores is presented including upfront payment, in-app purchase and on-going subscriptions. The changing world of app revenue is summarized, indicating revenue started 'all up front', however, it is migrating to mostly in-app to give people time to see if the application meets their needs.
This report also evaluates the dynamics of apps on individual smartphone devices and provides evidence that the number of mobile apps downloaded is increasing, however, the number of active apps is leveling off at forty (40). A major section of the report defines the implications for enterprise mobility, and another section deals with the trend that mobile apps are free to download but are not necessarily free to use. The report ends with a vision for the future that indicates how app stores will proliferate for the next few years but then will go through a 'shake out' period in which only one or two app stores will survive for each mobile operating platform.