Free downloadable apps still popular for smartphone users

Free appsPeople use the cliché “the best things in life are free” almost all the time. At times, people use it as their motto in life.

Well, in the app world, that cliché truly is a fact.

According to research firm Gartner Inc., about 90% of apps downloaded in smartphones all over the world are free. And those premium apps that people purchase cost $3 or less.

Gartner added that mobile app downloads will exceed 45.6 billion this year. Among these, free downloads account to 40.1 billion.

Those premium apps that aren’t as popular as those free have not been doing fairly. As the research firm reported that amongst those being paid, 90% belong to those priced $3 and below.

They added that this year, apps priced between 99 cents and $2.99 accounted for 87.5% of the paid downloads. They said by 2016 this figures will increase to 96%.

Among all the app stores in the market, the most popular is Apple’s App Store. This year alone, it has already accounted to 21 billion downloads. This figure has increased by 74% since last year.

According to research director at Gartner Brian Blau, “Apple’s market share is the largest, considering its App Store accounts for 25 percent of available apps in all stores.”

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Mobile phone sales dip, but Samsung’s sales increase

Mobile phone sales during the first quarter of this year fell short of what was expected a year ago.

Industry tracker Gartner reported that about 419.1 million mobile phones were sold during the first quarter. This figures amount to a two percent decline from the same period last year.

Anshul Gupta of Gartner said, “Global sales of mobile devices declined more than expected due to a slowdown in demand from the Asia-Pacific region. The first quarter, traditionally the strongest quarter for Asia – which is driven by Chinese New Year – saw a lack of new product launches from leading manufacturers, and users delayed upgrades in the hope of better smartphone deals arriving later in the year.”

The most promising figure came from South Korean electronics giant Samsung as they became the top mobile phone seller in the quarter.

Samsung sold about 86.8 million units, a 25.9 percent increase from last year’s first quarter.

Smartphones with Android OS accounts to about 56 percent of the total market. iPhones on the other hand has 22.9 percent.

Research in Motion’s BlackBerry saw a dip in its market share. RIM sold 9.9 million units in the first quarter down from 13 million last year.

Grupta said, “RIM desperately needs to deliver winning BB10 products to retain users and stay competitive.”

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