A new report from Sensor Tower shows that in-app purchases are still popular among both smartphone users and developers. These analytics demonstrate that iPhone users spent 23% more on in-app purchases in 2017 than they did in the year before.
This intelligence data revealed that the “average amount spent per active iPhone” hit a new high of $58 last year in comparison to $47 back in 2016. Games contributed to roughly $36 of that total, followed by entertainment, music, social networking and lifestyle apps.
These include purchases that are made through Apple’s first-party in-app purchase system such as subscriptions on apps like Netflix. Purchases made through apps such as Uber and Amazon aren’t included as Apple does not take a revenue cut of these.
When it comes to downloads of apps per phone, Sensor Tower also reported that there was an increase of 10%, with numbers rising to 45 apps. This is an average of four or more apps from the year before.
However, video and photo apps decreased by 10% year-over-year while games increased by 7%:
Games again made up the largest share of those apps at just over 13 installed per device, up from 12.3 in 2016, a 7 percent increase year-over-year. Among the remaining most-downloaded categories on iPhone last year in the U.S., Entertainment grew 7 percent from 2.9 per device to 3.1 on average, and Utilities grew 4 percent from 2.3 to 2.4 per phone.
Social Networking was unchanged at 2.9 installs per device, while Photo & Video app installs per iPhone decreased 10 percent year-over-year from 4 installs to 3.6 per phone.
The in-app purchasing scheme has been controversial with users over the past few years but the model has proven successful for developers.