As Apple's and Google's app marketplaces approach the 1 billion mark, it's becoming harder and harder for new developers to get their apps noticed and for consumers to discover new and interesting content.
The report by app tracking company Distimo, entitled "The New Apps in the Crowd," covers the Apple App store in the US for iPhone and iPad and Google Play from October 2012 until January 2013 and highlights how difficult it is for new titles from new developers to make any headway in large mature app markets.
New publishers on Google's app store fare slightly better than those on Apple: 3 percent of the top 250 apps over the period studied were new titles (2% for Apple), and newcomers to Google's platform have published six free apps on average compared with two on Apple.
However, on the whole, the best-performing new apps between October and January were not from new publishers, they were simply new titles. The new app to pass 1 million downloads quickest between October and January was Temple Run 2, followed by Google Maps in second place and LINE POP in third. The only truly new app -- that is, from a new developer -- in the list is Majic Jungle Software's The Blockheads, which was the eighth fastest to hit the same milestone.
Downloads and revenues are two completely different things and when new apps are ranked in terms of how much they earned in terms of revenues, Angry Birds Star Wars (HD) is number one, followed by Angry Birds Star Wars in second place. Grand Theft Auto Vice City came third, followed by Temple Run 2, with Need for Speed: Most Wanted rounding out the top five.
Distimo concludes that while it's easy for new apps to succeed, it is nowhere near as easy for new app developers to succeed. As both the Apple App Store and Google Play move towards the 1 million app mark, app discovery is going to become harder and harder for consumers that are looking for something different or unusual. While a number of app discovery apps such as App Grooves, App Flow, Find Apps and Free App Daily exist, they are limited in how they curate and classify quality, meaning that for many consumers the only way of finding out about new and interesting apps is through tech blogs and viral recommendations from friends.