The number of applications downloaded from mobile app stores will reach more than 17.7 billion worldwide by the end of this year, according to IT research group Gartner, and be worth a combined $15.1 billion in sales. This represents a 117% rise over the forecast 8.2 billion downloads made during 2010.
That growth will only continue in future. Gartner predicts that by the end of 2014, the total number of mobile apps downloaded since July 2008, when the first app store went to market, will reach 185 billion.
In January 2011, device-maker Apple claimed that ten billion applications had been downloaded from its own App Store since it launched two and a half years ago.
“We strongly believe there is a sizeable opportunity for application stores in the future,” commented Stephanie Baghdassarian, Gartner research director. “However, applications will have to grow up and deliver a superior experience to the one that a web-based app will be able to deliver.”
Other technology vendors that have produced their own mobile application stores include Google’s Android Marketplace and BlackBerry-maker Research In Motion’s App World.