Mobile App Revenes to Double, Access Revenues Will Fall 9%, Between 2013 and 2020

Global aggregated statistics, though useful, can hide significant regional or ecosystem differences, it always is fair to note.

Nice upward-sloping bar charts are compelling at a high level, but can obscure other trends. In the earlier parts of a lifecycle, such bar charts give the illusion of solidity. Only later, when growth tops out, and decline begins, do we see the expected full product lifecycle curve.

Also, many other trends often occur below the “headline” numbers. Consider the relative revenue shares in the mobile ecosystem, for example. As virtually all the participants are aware, shares of overall ecosystem revenue are shifting.

In 2013, mobile service providers claimed 59 percent of ecosystem revenue, app providers 10 percent of total revenue. By 2020, the GSMA estimates, service providers will earn half of ecosystem revenues, while app providers earn 20 percent of ecosystem revenue.

The global market still is growing, as many potential customers remain to be gotten. But, as tends to be the case, the incremental new users represent less revenue per account. And, inevitably, the market will saturate, rather sooner than many expect.

The key ecosystem change: app share of revenue doubles while access revenue declines nine percent.

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