Android is the worlds most popular mobile operating system, but what about its ecosystem and it's app publishers? Where is the next spurt of growth going to come from? According to a report released by App Annie and MEF, the next wave of growth will come from Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Turkey and India, commonly called the emerging markets.
But before we start, who are App Annie and MEF? Well, App Annie tracks downloads, revenues, rankings and reviews of over 90% of the Top 100 mobile app publishers, they are the industry standard for analytics and market data relating to digital content. And MEF (Mobile Entertainment Forum) is an impartial, platform agnostic global community whose aim is to aid companies both innovate and monetize their mobile offerings.
On to the nitty gritty, and as previously mentioned, the report states that countries such as Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Turkey and India will provide the impetus to sustain the Play Stores rate of growth. We often run articles covering smart phone launches in India, and in such articles we often say it's a fiercely contested market. But what we perhaps haven't mentioned is that only around 10% of the Indian population have access to a smart phone. So while India is indeed the fastest-growing market from Q1 2013 to Q1 2014, there is still tremendous room for growth. Google has recognised this, as witnessed by their recently launched Android One initiative, with other companies such as Xiaomi and Meizu trying to get in on the action. Why is this important to app publishers? Well, every time someone buys their first Android smart phone, that means that someone is starting from scratch. They don't have a library of previously purchased apps to reinstall like the majority of us that already own Android smart phones, and that means they are the next source of income for app publishers.
An example. The United States is the Play Store's largest source of income, but it only saw an increase in downloads of 10%. By contrast, India, Turkey, Mexico and Indonesia saw their downloads grow by 30%/ 60%/ 60% and 70%. These are amazing figures that are only over-shadowed by Brazil's doubling of it's app downloads. And while the revenue generated by these emerging markets is relatively puny when compared to the more established markets, the rate of growth is definitely something to keep an eye on if you are an app developer. Because why wouldn't you want your app to appeal to the widest possible audience?
According to Olivier Bernard, the VP EMEA at App Annie, "Emerging markets offer a huge opportunity for app publishers. However moving into new markets is not always as simple as translating an app." This makes sense, as each culture has is its own set of sensitivities, a sales strategy that works in the US might not be popular in India, and vice versa. Olivier Bernard went on to say that "Local content and an understanding of the local app market, local competitors and local expectations is key to making the most of these rapidly growing opportunities."
So, if you are an app publisher, it might be time to take a look at your app/s and see how you can make your content more relevant to the people of the emerging markets. Of course, the Google Play has thousands of apps, so how do you get your unique app noticed and judged upon its merits? One easy way is by making of our App Review Service. This is where we produce a comprehensive review of your app, with the resulting review published on our front page reaching our 2 million plus unique monthly visitors along with our social media followers. You can find out more about our App Review Service here.