June 10, 2016

Mobile App News for June, 2016

Big changes are on the way for the App Store and Google Play - search ads and subscription models are going to shake up the mobile industry.
Tyler Moore

Tyler helps spread the word about App Press, and helps new customers get started with our software.

Lots of big things happening this week in mobile news. Here's what's been going on, and what we've been talking about at App Press HQ.

Apple Announces Paid App Store Search

If you’re looking for new channels to market your iPhone or iPad app, Apple Search Ads will provide a new paid option this fall. According to Apple, over 65% of app downloads are attributed to searches in the App Store.

On Wednesday, Apple announced search ads will be publicly available  to the App Store this fall.

With this move, Apple’s obviously angling to make it easier for entrepreneurs to promote their apps, without having to learn the ins and outs of App Store Optimization.

So, how does Apple Search Ads work? This quote from Apple gives a bit more information:

“Various targeting features will enable deeper discovery of apps, including lesser known or niche apps. By default a user won’t see ads for apps they already have downloaded, and demographic and device location based targeting will give you a new way to target those specific user groups that matter to you.
An ad will only be shown if it is relevant to the search query. If an ad is not relevant to what the user is looking for, it will not be shown in the ad spot regardless of how much you are willing to pay.”

This sounds like Search Ads will work in a very similar way to Google AdWords, allowing people to improve visibility of their apps by segmenting audiences and bidding on search terms.

App Store Search Ads is in beta now, and you can opt in here. We definitely can’t wait to give this a try ourselves!

App Subscription Plans are Coming

Apple also announced apps in all categories of the app store will be eligible to offer in-app purchases for automatically-renewing subscriptions. These subscriptions can be for services or content, and will soon be available.

As of June 13, Apple’s subscription model will change. App owners who opt into the new subscription model will receive 70% of the revenue for the first year. After the first year, the revenue share for app owners increases to 85%, minus any taxes and fees.

Not to be outdone by Apple, Google is reportedly planning a similar subscription option for developers. However, Google will offer an 85% cut of revenue up front, rather than after a year of service like Apple. We haven't seen an official announcement from Google, but a similar subscription offering seems likely.

Apple and Google’s new subscription models offer a new path to app monetization, and sound like a great way to encourage creating engaging, useful content to us!

There's still some confusion from developers, as to whether their apps will qualify for subscription-based pricing or not. John Gruber published a great article on Daring Fireball with some more thoughts about what Apple's new subscription options could mean for developers.

We’re excited to see how these changes to the App Store and Google Play impact the mobile industry. Wondering if a subscription model is the right business model for your app? Send us a message - we’d love to talk about your idea :)

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