updated 11:45 am EDT, Tue April 20, 2010
Figure assumes several factors
The top 1,000 paid iPad apps are generating approximately $372,000 per day, claims Weather HD developer vimov. The figure is based on the company's own analysis and experiences at the App Store, as well as data for the top 100 apps supplied by Applyzer. Assuming the estimate is a realistic average, the iPad app market could be worth at least $136 million per year, vimov suggests.
If iPad apps take after the iPhone and, after May, sell in a 40 to 60 percent ratio outside the US, the developer estimates that the industry could grow to reach at least $272 million per year. Genuinely mimicking the iPhone's advancement from 100 million apps in two months to 4 billion apps in 19 months could theoretically result in a $1 billion market. In keeping with App Store policy, 30 percent of the money would be directed back to Apple.
The analysis ignores apps outside of the top 1,000, and makes several assumptions. The $136 and $272 million figures are founded on an audience of just 500,000 iPad owners regularly buying new apps, when device ownership is already over that figure. Some buyers could subsequently hit a limit of apps they need or want, and the appeal of the iPad may be less than that of the iPhone, due to factors like cost and function duplication. Some iPad apps are much more expensive than their iPhone counterparts and could be forced down in price to spur demand.