iOS App Store Global Revenue

Recently I happened to come across, and their blog post about where downloads and revenue take place on a global level. These statistics are pretty interesting from a localization perspective, since you are able to see where in the world the most activity takes place on the App Store and where you might benefit most from localizing your app. The statistics are roughly six months old at the time of me writing this, but what they point towards is as valid today as much as it was six months ago.

Looking at where the most downloads of apps are outside of the US, the biggest single entity is China. Looking at revenue instead, China accounts for roughly 2% of the global App Store revenue. Either way you slice it, there is good potential for localizing your app and aiming for the Chinese market. Apple themselves are making a large push in China, so we can expect some good growth there in the coming years. Developers with an eye towards the future would do well to localize their apps sooner, rather than later.

Another large market next to China is Japan, which represent some 5% of global App Store downloads. Despite this lower number, compared to China, Japan accounts for some 9% of global App Store revenue. While Japan isn’t growing in the same sense as China is, there is still a large change going on in that more and more people in Japan are getting smartphones. The iPhone has been one of the best selling smartphones in Japan, which is very impressive considering that is is made by a non-indigenous company. There is plenty of growth for app sales in Japan and looking forward it doesn’t look like it’s going to stop any time soon.

The UK, France, Germany, Canada, and Korea all represent substantial parts of the global App Store downloads, but it looks a bit different if we look at the revenue instead. Then we see that Italy, Australia and Switzerland join the previously mentioned countries and amount to roughly 74% of the global App Store revenue.

This still leaves us with the interesting chunk of 26% that is the rest of the world. While all the many regions, countries and languages hidden inside this anonymous number might not be as impressive as the other 64%, it is by no means a small amount. With a localized app you can expand your reach into this potentially lucrative area, where your app might take off.

As much as it is believed that people in some countries are good at English, a lot of people still want to have apps in their native language. There is the familiarity factor of having something in your own language as well as that some people just aren’t comfortable enough in their language abilities to use English all the time in computer software. The need for localized apps very much remains and will do so for some time to come.

Seeing how many markets lie outside of the English speaking territories, we always advise our clients to localize their apps to as many languages as possible. The more markets you have a presence in, the more likely it is that your sales will increase.

Source of statistics: Appannie - The Importance Of Localization

Robert Lo Bue

Rob is CEO of Applingua. With over a decade's experience, he is at the forefront of tech localization.


  1. Very useful information. There is so much technology here, keeping up with the best and best selling and most in demand smartphones is difficult, this site and info helps me. Thanks.