Google’s Android phones are used by more people, yet Apple’s App Store sells 400% more than Google’s online store for Android apps. How is this even possible? Consumer tech experts say it’s because Apple started early and has stringent quality control and also has a whole lot of iTunes account holders who typed in their credit card information before they even owned a smart phone.
Consumers are more willing to fork over their money for an iOS app, because they know they’ll probably get their money’s worth, says app developer Zak Tanjeloff with DLP Mobile. “The App Store has a higher proportion of quality apps, thanks to the approval process,” he says. “That means developers can, and have, charged more for their apps.”
These may be true facts, but another bit of Apple news out today suggests what everybody already knows: Apple customers have plenty of money to spend on more Apple things.
The iPad Mini, for example, was marketed as an actual iPad tablet computer. It was assumed by many analysts that iPad Mini sales would “cannibalize” new sales of the full-sized iPad Retina. This assumption, however, was based on another assumption that nobody would ever make if they walked into any upper-middle-class apartment and saw the absurd number of Apple devices elegantly crowding every recently dusted surface: multiple iPhones and iPads, of course, but also the latest iMac in a pride-of-place nook atop a $2,300 sliver of desk, and several MacBooks gleaming from the kitchen counter and coffee table and bonus room desk, and also the white Airport wifi stations blinking with contentment from various line-of-sight electrical outlets, and even an AppleTV unit and a Time Capsule backup system tucked here and there.
Apple customers don’t know what “Oh I already have one” even means. It is as foreign to them as a Windows login screen. So, more than half of all iPad Mini sales are going to existing Apple customers; only 47% are new to the iPad market.
There may be more Android phone users, but Android phones cost less and have been marketed, until very recently, as budget versions of the iPhone. Apple users buy a shocking amount of apps, without even thinking about it, because Apple users tend to piss away money all day long.
Photo by Joakim Jardenberg.