We’ve covered a few Distimo reports in the past, as they provide us with valuable insights into Apple’s App Store and Google’s Android Market, based on the startup’s in-depth analysis of publicly available data. Now the company has added RIM’s Blackberry App World store to the fray, giving us even more data points to compare rivals’ app prices and so on.
In the latest report (September 2009), Distimo notes that software programs for Blackberry devices are considerably more expensive than comparable applications for competing devices/platforms.
In fact, the average app price is more than three times higher than that of similar apps in App Store and Android Market, which is kind of amazing. There’s not a single category where the average price of an app is lower than its equivalent on the last two app storefronts, and the more serious, business-related tools are significantly more expensive. Just look at the difference in fees for apps in categories such as Finance, Productivity, Reference, News, Utility/Tools and in particular, Navigation/Travel in the table below.
Research In Motion has traditionally targeted a more professional audience with its product line, but is that enough to explain why developers price their mobile software so much higher than their counterparts on competing platforms? Or are Blackberry users simply more willing (and able) to pay for apps? If so, the higher price is simply the result of a simple relationship between supply and demand.
Either way, the price difference is pretty clear.
Update: as commenter Cameron rightly points out, the minimum subscription price for apps distributed on App World is $2.99, which partly explains the huge price differences (I doubt that’s the only reason) . Note that the store is also open to free applications (if they generate income after downloading).
The graph also shows that app prices for the most popular listings in Apple’s App Store and Android Market are quite similar, with only Social Networking, Navigation and Travel and Productivity showing a slight difference. in the asking prices.