BlackBerry developers make more money than Android and iOS developers

BlackBerry Apps
By Jared DiPane on 23 Sep 2011 11:28 pm EDT
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We all know that RIM has been the center of a ton of negative attention, and many people complain that there are not enough applications out there, but is that the developers fault, or the ecosystems fault? A recent study that was performed by Evans Data Corp set out to gather the facts, and to see on which platform the developers made the most money, and the results are shocking. 400 commercial developers were interviewed and the results showed that 13% of BlackBerry developers make over $100,000 from their application, which they say is "considerably more than Android or iOS developers."

Of course this doesn't hold for every developer, not just anyone who submits an application to AppWorld is going to make over $100,000, but it does show that the BlackBerry ecosystem is strong, users are willing to buy applications, we just need people to continue to develop them.

So developers, now that you know the potential how many of you are off to sign up for the upcoming Hackathon events and bring BlackBerry the applications that we dream for?

Source: Evans Data Corp; via Yahoo 

Reader comments

BlackBerry developers make more money than Android and iOS developers

50 Comments

I'm gonna be negative nancy here and say cuz the apps are like 5 bux haha. Just saying. Not many of the apps are 99 cents until the playbook came out. And of course EA charging out the you know what for games like deadspace. Was worth it in my opinion though. But I love my BB and I hope that it gets stronger. BTW FIRST!!

oh and on a side note... I am really sick of receiving emails from banks and other sites that advertise their mobile apps just to log in and find it's all iOS and Android. I'm seriously getting tired of this... the only thing I guess is just to wait for QNX phone and hope that the android player can use those mobile apps as well...

Probably more money per sale. How many sales do iOS and Android developers make per each BlackBerry sale though? Yeeaahhh.

Sales volume is up. A year ago it only took 20-25 sales a day to make top-100 at App World. Now it takes 40-45. So, what you see in Top Paid is selling twice as much as a year ago.

Anything in the top 25 is selling at least 100 copies a day, for at least $25k/yr per dollar of cost, if it stays there all year.

Not disputing that sales may have in fact doubled up from last year but how does the number of days to hit top paid translate to increased sales?
That's simply the review period

Jumpin' Jeepers! Where did I say anything about the number of days?

If last year an app that sold at a rate of 20-25 sales per day just made the bottom of the top paid list, and this year an app has to sell at a rate of 40-45 sales per day to just make the bottom of the top paid list, then I'm inferring that it takes twice as high a sale rate to make the list. That doesn't necessarily mean that #10 is making twice as many sales per day as last year, but it does mean that #100 is making twice as many sales per day as last year.

Weak competition + higher prices = More money for the top sellers compared to iOS and Android.

It could also be that BB apps are meant to be useful, productive and, you know, designed to actually accomplish something, not just to entertain, so they require a little more thought and planning.

Awesome. As for EA, you got Tetris and Need for Speed for free, the you complain when they charge you 10 bucks for a game? C'mon.

You have to figure that devs would make more money on bb because the market isn't as saturated. BB users only have a couple of different fart apps ti choose from, where iOS and Android users have a plethora.

Android is the platform moron Google is the company that owns it so android does not make any money Google makes it!

Why don’t you get the hell off a BB site if you just want to sh$t on everything?

Add another thing to that formula: no sign-up cost. It's impossible to lose money developing for BlackBerry. It is very easy to lose money developing for iOS because you have to be good enough to stand out over the competition enough to get back your $99 a year fee for privilege of letting them sell your product.

iOS is overrun by true nerds who have been completely up to speed in all things Apple since Steve Jobs fell asleep in that tree and dropped his apple on Isaac Newton's head. And those professional nerds do nothing but nerd around writing code and designing graphics and neat animations, so unless you're prepared to be a super nerd working 14 hours a day, or have a very lucky concept, don't bother, you can't compete.

At BlackBerry you don't have to compete, all you have to do is drop an empty hook in the lake and you'll catch a fish.

I can see why the app writers make so much money, compare the prices of BB apps to iOS or Android, many on the later 2 are given away.

Yes I know there is a lot of crap on iOS or Android, but as there are probably 10s if not 100s of thousands more apps for these 2 platforms compared to BB, you can allow for all the crap apps

This is what I've been thinking the whole time! Of course with hundreds of thousands of apps, the small-time developers are going to get pwned compared to the big shots. When the competition is sooo much fiercer, its more difficult to make a buck.

If you look at the basic ratio of:

SUBSCRIBERS
--------------------
APPS.

I don't have time to find the exact numbers, but RIM's factor is higher than Google's or Apple's. Nokia's is probably through the roof, LOL, but they have other issues. This means, for a dev that you have the best chance, in theory, of people seeing your app in app world, and hence purchasing it.

Obviously if you look at Apple's ecosystem, you have tons and tons of apps, with a comparable number of subscribers as RIM. This means you get drowned out in the competition. Developers are incentivized to move to where they see the least competition and highest subscribers.

"This means, for a dev that you have the best chance, in theory, of people seeing your app in app world"...or not.

What with the tons and tons of useless reviews from people posting pins plaguing the rewiew system?
What with app world's search engine not being capable of finding an app that you specify or it's tendency for providing a list with a lot of irrelevant results?

I've been a BB user since before the first "curve" appeared, and recently switched to a 9810 (off contract). I love the hardware and device experience, but find it overall VERY frustrating to find good content and apps without going out to external sites that I may not feel comfortable visiting.
I compare this to the closed ecosystem in iTunes... There everyone gets a chance to know the same products (apps or content), you download everything from there and there's ONE metric source for the relative popularity of an app. Or at least that's my perception of it.

wow....an area where ios and android does not excel at and all the trolls come out of the woodworks.

It's obviously because of the amount of cracked apps available. iOS = Loads, and loads, and more freakin loads of cracked apps. Practically almost every app on App store can be installed for free. And they're usually well updated and supported(the jailbreaking community)

Androids can be rooted, and install anything as well.

Blackberry, no rooting/jailbreaking etc on it. The number of cracked applications is very minimal and usually way out of date. So go figure. You like something, you gotta buy it.

The only reason blackberry developers make more money is because 70% of the apps are paid and don't have ads in them like most IOS and android developers. The other developers rely on ads in their free apps which I think is away better system than the current blackberry app system. If only Rim would implement a good ads system for their ecosystem they would be able to get more developers and the developers would be happy in the long run.

You may right with the difference in profit model but the first next thing I after installing and app with adverts all over it is to uninstall it.

its because they screw users by charging more and then RIM dont do the currency calculations properly so UK users get even more screwed!

its funny the amount of "its because of's" that are being stated when in the end, the only point that was being made is that if devs wanna make more money, they should develop for BB(also), "because" regardless of all these reasons, they are being bought. simple.

BB is not a political philosophy or religion so the degree of vociferousness with which people make their points somewhat astounds me...oh wait. For some people, it *is* those things! Anyway, I'd just like to add that it's often disingenous to come to prima facie conclusions from raw data. One should factor in not just the relatively low population of developers on the BAW roster, concommittant with the relatively low number of apps in BAW vs AS, etc. Another big factor: the 'Super Apps' made by 'Super Devs'. I'm disappointed that the article was so short. I'd have hoped it would be longer and more detailed. Perhaps including data showing what proportion of the total revenue base apps like UberSocial are, for instance, or what percentage devs like Uken, for e.g., are of the total app revenue made from BAW. It's safe to assume that the Super App Devs skew the direction of the overall outcome of the study, but by virtue of them being a minority of course they're not typical. So it's not quite correct to say that BAW devs make more money than those on other platforms. In fact some do, most very likely don't.

I personally dislike this fact,
I buy apps from iPhone,
simply cause the apps are very innovative
yet reasonably priced (99 cents most of time)
which can be bought easy

but on blackberry,
It makes me to spend on very standard apps
at ridiculous price(mostly $5 or more)
for something usually built-in feature
on many other phones
such as multi alarm, weather...

I personally believe that
business oriented os/phone should have those features
right off the box, I am not asking for angry bird here

ROFLMAO an Iphone guy talkin about features that should have come with the phone. Seriously dude? How many generations did it take the Iphone to get a camera? Or a flash? Txt Messaging and picture Messaging? Copy and Paste? You can get free weather apps for BB. I think my dad has been using the free version of weatherbug for almost a year. And business oriented people would probably just go online to the webpage. The phone still has internet you know. Bookmark weather underground or something and go. The Multi Alarm is just a minor issue. I don't really find that a necessity.

There is this weird difference between peoples' attitude toward software in computers vs. phones. People don't mind having a computer that still can't do anything after spending $300 for a copy of Windows, they next spend $500 on a copy of Photoshop which they will never use above 1% of, then another $500 for an office suite they will also use about 1% of.

But on a phone they want everything to come with it pre-installed or at least at their fingertips for free, or they start griping that someone wants to charge them $5 for what took as long to write as a $99 computer application.

$5 is not a ridiculous price for anything substantial anymore. People drop $5 to walk in the door of a cheap bar, or drink a beer, or to drive on the highway for 10 minutes.

"I want great apps, but $5 is a rip-off." Glug, glug, glug. Another round, please. And I drive an SUV that gets 15 miles to the gallon.

So, yes RIM could use this carrot of more money to lure the developers in. I'm just wondering if the developer tools or kits are good...

No, they're not, and that's the main reason I've heard why people surrender profitability to go to the competition. The @BlackBerryDev twitter account assured me a couple days ago that there would be some big improvements announced at DevCon that "will knock your socks off", though, so hopefully they're right and they get more competitive on this front.

I've argued this before: http://www.ryanrobinsononline.com/blog/technology/why-i-develop-for-blac...

There's a simple formula which favours developers: Profit = revenue - costs. Potential for revenue is much higher even if your app sucks, and there is no costs. Therefore the difference is always positive (or in the rare case 0), and the gap widens between them much faster than developing for iOS or Android. I made a theme in 20 minutes and get $5-$15 a month from just that (for about six months so far). It is ridiculously easy money.

Developing for BB costs no money at all and there is hardly any competition in the market. This means that if you come up with a mediocre app, charge $2 for it, it will still sell a lot because there is no better option but still a very large user base. So you never have any potential to lose money, and it is very easy to end up gaining a lot of money even if you're an amateur. On iOS and WP, you pay $99 a year for the privilege of putting apps in their store (Android I think is $25 one time fee), plus you have a lot of other devs releasing apps that does the same thing. In order to be profitable on iOS you have to be good enough to stand out over everybody else. There is a similar user base but way more apps competing for it, which means for an amateur like me, I know I wouldn't make money on iOS and Android. On BB, you need to sell one download of the app to be profitable, and with no competition that is pretty easy to do.

Of course this works against BlackBerry users at least for now - the lack of competition which means more money for devs also means more spending to get inferior products for consumers. But I definitely am surprised how few other devs have jumped on this basic profit formula as I have.

I think it also has to do with the fact that there are so many apps for android, and ios, and on android, there seems so be a free option for a lot of the apps people want. so why pay for an app when there's a free one that does the same thing? That's one of the things that draw certain ppl to it..

BB owners are largly a part of the corporate world which is where most of the desposable income lies in the world. Which in theory says that AppWorld has the potential to bring some big bucks if more apps become available.

Blackberry apps suck. Who cares how much money developers make? All this means is that people are paying more for worse apps.

I know a few developers and unless I'm just hanging out with the wrong guys that research sounds like complete rubbish.

I don't know anyone that makes more than a few hundred bucks a month. 13% sounds like far too many. More like 1.3%.

I believe the research, if you work well on the right things you can easily make that kind of money in BB. Even PlayBook, maybe there are only 200,000 of them bought but they're all starved for apps. Write anything halfway decent and there's your 100k.

its been said before but ill +1

BB apps are laughably overpriced. i dont care if it took you a year to develop. the fact is i cant justify purchasing an application that costs 2.99 baseline for some peice of shit that probably wont even run correctly anyway. not to mention i have to do a battery pull after i install AND after i delete (usually not long after).

and 2.99 is cheap for a bb! LOL app world has "clock screeensavers" priced at 100$! absolutely absurd. i deleted app world and decided to live without apps on my laughably overpriced bold 9930 because newsflash: IT CANT HANDLE THEM ANYWAY!

i seriously tried for so long to defend RIM but at this point in the game im just waiting for them to die so i can keep my BB collection as nostalgia.

RIM: great keyboard. nice LED. bbms nice for 3 ppl i kno that havent made the switch yet (contracts are ending soon, which means bbm will be passe for me in a few months)

everything else: FAIL

its been said before but ill +1

BB apps are laughably overpriced. i dont care if it took you a year to develop. the fact is i cant justify purchasing an application that usually costs 2.99 baseline for some peice of shit that probably wont even run correctly anyway. not to mention i have to do a battery pull after i install AND after i delete (usually not long after).

and 2.99 is cheap for a bb! LOL app world has "clock screeensavers" priced at 100$! absolutely absurd. i deleted app world and decided to live without apps on my laughably overpriced bold 9930 because newsflash: IT CANT HANDLE THEM ANYWAY!

i seriously tried for so long to defend RIM but at this point in the game im just waiting for them to die so i can keep my BB collection as nostalgia.

RIM: great keyboard. nice LED (so long as u have a 9000/9700/9650) bbms nice for 3 ppl i kno that havent made the switch yet (contracts are ending soon, which means bbm will be passe for me in a few months)

everything else: FAIL

I don't understand. If you people compaining about blackberries so much don't like blackberries, then why do you own one or more?