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The Mac App Store Won’t Make You Rich

The Mac App Store Won t Make You Rich Bloomberg Business


Developers set their own prices and keep 70 percent of the revenue, but that may not be enough to sustain independent PC app makers trying to make a name for themselves, says Dan Counsell, the founder of developer Realmac Software. For both PC and mobile developers, “the peak for indies on the App Store was around 2013. It was much easier back then to launch a financially successful app,” Counsell wrote on his blog following Soffes’s disclosures. “Things have changed. The larger, more established companies now take the lion’s share of revenue.” On May 6, Realmac’s $5 iOS version of the to-do list app Clear ranked 65th among top mobile paid apps that day, generating $853.60 for the company after Apple took its cut. The $10 PC version ranked 15th on the Mac App Store and brought in $454.13, or about 65 downloads’ worth.

Redacted, which peaked at No. 2 on the Mac App Store, sold 1,845 copies through May 19 and earned $6,600. The app got 423 downloads on its best day. Soffes is building an iOS version, but on May 4 he started at Venmo, the payment app maker. “I definitely made the right decision,” he says.

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These numbers are scary in that they show how hard it is to make money as a software developer these days if you're not working for a venture-backed startup.

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