The Android Market is a churn machine

MocoNews yesterday got some critical information from T-Mobile USA about Google's Android Market, the most interesting of which is the average G1 user's voracious consumption of Apps.

According to the report, 40 million apps have been downloaded since the G1 debuted just over five months ago, and based upon the number of handsets sold, the average user downloads 40 apps from the Android Market.

Earlier this year, Apple said that 500 million apps had been downloaded from the iTunes App Store in the seven month period from July 2008 to January 2009. At the introduction of iPhone 3.0 two weeks ago, Apple's Vice President of iPod and iPhone product marketing, Greg Joswiak, said that 17 million iPhones had been sold. By extending the iTunes App Store sales into March based on a per-month average, at the time Apple reported 17 million iPhones, some 642 million apps had been downloaded.


This would mean iPhone users download an average of 37 apps each.

But more downloads for a platform doesn't necessarily mean its apps are better -- in fact, the opposite may be true. Data from Pinch Media showed that most users will download lots of free apps and never use them after the first time.

The group found that usage of free apps dropped as much as 80% in a single day, and that generally only 1% of downloaders actually constitutes a "long-term audience." This increased slightly in paid apps, and the only category of application on the iPhone that retained long-term usage was games.

The app store model, the group posited, is designed for maximum turnover. Since the Android Market only introduced paid applications one month ago, T-mobile's numbers show at the very least that Google has been more efficient at generating app turnover.

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