Google’s Android operating system may have the biggest market share in the world, but if you’re a developer making apps, iOS is clearly where all the money is to be made.
In its latest quarterly earnings report, Google shared some surprising new numbers with investors, including the fact that the company has paid out $80 billion to Android developers to date. That may sound like a lot, but it’s just over half of what iOS developers have been paid so far.
Today, @sundarpichai shared that developers around the world (excl. China) have earned more than $80 billion to date on @GooglePlay. Our platform can’t succeed without the help of our developer ecosystem, so a huge thank you for all you do!
— Hiroshi Lockheimer (@lockheimer) February 4, 2020
Google senior vice president Hiroshi Lockheimer tweeted about the milestone yesterday. The company might want to hold off on bragging too much though. Apple has paid out $155 billion to iOS developers, as of January 2020.
Google Play Store vs iOS App Store
To put the Android vs iOS money difference in comparison, there were 2.5 billion active Android devices in the world as of last summer. Apple currently has about 1.5 billion active devices.
Apple’s payouts to developers have topped Android’s for years. Google allows developers to use their own payment methods, so there is a bit of disparity between the platforms, but not big enough to explain why iOS developers make so much more.
The wisdom that more money is made on iOS isn’t exactly new. Apple paid out $100 billion to developers by 2018 and hit $70 billion in payouts the year before.