updated 01:55 pm EDT, Fri March 30, 2012
Google Play still well behind Apple, Amazon
The Google Play Store still makes less than a quarter of the revenue from apps than Apple's App Store, Flurry found in tracking app data. Setting the iTunes-based Apple portal as the reference point, the analysis saw Google Play (formerly Android Market) make just 23 percent of the revenue relative to size in a 45-day period starting mid-January. The ratio was actually down from December, when Google's official Android store made 24 percent.
The study likewise showed that Amazon was considerably more effective at selling Android apps than Google itself, as Amazon was making 89 percent of Apple's revenue compared to its own small but significant size.
Flurry saw Google's deficit as a virtue of continued inexperience in sales. Both Apple and Amazon are focused primarily in retail-like sales, online or off, and would have better experience spurring sales. Google is still known for search and web ads, the two of which have little to do with paid apps.
Other factors commonly attributed to Google's troubles include continued difficulty discovering genuinely new apps, the complexities of paying for an app with Google Wallet, and possibly just fostering a culture where users expect apps to be free. Major developers like Rovio often release only ad-supported versions of apps that are normally paid in iOS as they anticipate most Android users either avoiding an app entirely or pirating it.