It’s latest set of iPhones may not have generated much enthusiasm but Apple Inc. (AAPL) is still raking in the moolah through its app store.
The Cupertino company announced this morning that customers spent almost quarter of a billion dollars on apps and other purchases through its store on New Year’s Day. That dollar amount represents a 66 percent increase from last year’s figures of $144 million. On an overall basis, the company said it gave away $20 billion to developers in 2016, a 40 percent increase from last year and double the amount it gave away in 2014. Based on the figure provided by Apple, The Telegraph calculated that the total amount Apple spent on apps was $28.5 billion.
Two of the company’s top revenue earners come from the Nintendo Co., Ltd (NTDOY) stable. Pokemon Go, released last summer, and Super Mario Run, a recent release, were both strong revenue earners for the company. (See also: Apple App Store Sets Record On Pokemon Go). Regular free apps that are used for an assortment of services from dating to streaming music also had a good year in Apple’s App Store. According to the company, Netflix Inc. (NFLX), popular dating app Tinder, and music streaming app Spotify had sales worth $2.7 billion last year. The sales are a combination of in-app purchases and subscriptions. The app store was also in the news this morning because Apple removed the New York Times Company’s (NYTCO) news app in China on government request. The company has also reported a 90 percent jump in app sales in China.
As its iPhone sales have slowed, Apple has increasingly emphasized the cash flowing in from its Services division. The division, which includes revenues from Apple Pay and Apple Music, reported revenues of $6.3 billion, an increase of 24% from the same period a year ago, during Apple’s latest quarterly earnings report. The company is reorganizing its business to form a separate Cloud Services division to support growth in this segment. (See also: Apple Is Said To Be Forming A Cloud Services Division).