Richest fifth 'take 97% of all iOS game revenue'

Richest fifth 'take 97% of all iOS game revenue'

By Rob Crossley

September 29th 2011 at 11:51AM

Study exposes 'rich-poor divide'

Four fifths of iOS games developers share just 3 per cent of total revenues generated across the business, a new survey suggests.

The non-commercial study, conducted and written by an independent developer in his spare time, also discovered that just one per cent of mobile games developers take more than a third of total revenue the games business makes.

Owen Goss, the founder of Canadian group Streaming Colour Studios, found that more than half of mobile games developers make less than $3,000 in lifetime sales.

Four per cent, conversely, have made more than $1 million.

The study exposes a rich-poor divide across the mobile games landscape; a relatively unexamined phenomena due to misinterpreted data.

Goss (pictured) points out that, had he based his findings on total mean-average revenue figures – a common technique - the data would have suggested each developers makes about $165,000 .

Deeper research, however, found that 25% of mobile games developers have made less than $200. Another 25 per cent have made more than $30,000.

From total mobile games revenues;

* One per cent of respondents claimed 36 per cent of total revenue

* 19 per cent of respondents claimed 61 per cent of total revenue

* 80 per cent of respondents claimed 4% of total revenue

Goss drew the conclusions from an online survey of 252 developers during September. Over 90 per cent of respondents said they were either a full-time (36.1%), part-time (33.3%) or hobbyist (20.2%) game developer.

In a disclaimer, Goss said “I make no claims as to the statistical validity of this data. There is a good chance that the sample population is not representative of all game developers on the App Store”.


In June, former Apple CEO Steve Jobs revealed that the App Store market has grossed some $3.25 billion in total revenues worldwide.