The App Store ecosystem created almost 300,000 new U.S. jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic, Apple said Tuesday. It now supports more than 2.1 million people across all 50 states.
Apple pointed out that apps have become even more critical to Americans’ everyday lives as they adapt to new ways of working, learning and connecting during the coronavirus outbreak.
“Despite the pandemic, the App Store continues to provide economic opportunities for entrepreneurs of all sizes, helping anyone with an idea reach customers around the world and take advantage of new opportunities that would never be possible without it,” Apple said.
“The App Store ecosystem now supports more than 2.1 million US jobs across all 50 states — an increase of 15 percent since last year — as part of the 2.7 million jobs Apple supports across the country.”
Many developers have adapted their businesses during the pandemic, finding new opportunities and new ways to support users. For some, the changes have been hugely beneficial.
App Store booms during COVID-19
Caribu, the Miami-based developer of a video-calling app with unique features like the ability to draw and solve puzzles with others, has seen its business take off while millions are stuck inside. A tenfold increase in customers allowed Caribu’s team to triple in size.
“We’ve had incredible growth in the last year, and we’ve massively expanded our team to meet demand,” said Caribu co-founder Mexeme Tuchman. “It means so much to us to not only be able to help connect families and friends at this difficult time, but to be able to provide stable, well-paying jobs to our growing number of employees as well.”
Texas-based retail firm H-E-B, founded in 1905, has seen a staggering increase in online shoppers in recent months. It expanded its digital team by 150 people, and smashed its 2021 revenue goals in a matter of months.
“Our focus on ease of use turned out to be even more important than we’d imagined, and we’re proud that our app is making it possible for more Texans to take care of their families during the pandemic,” said Mike Georgoff, chief product officer for H‑E‑B Digital.
Big increases everywhere
These are just two of the many increases in app economy jobs across the United States. Maryland added 25,000 new positions since last year, while Michigan added 12,000, growing 34%. Many smaller states, including Alabama and Nevada, saw double-digit increases.
“As the app economy continues to grow, Apple is investing in educational programs and opportunities that help prepare learners of all ages for the app economy jobs of the future,” Apple said.
“Today more than 9,000 K-12 and higher education institutions worldwide are using Apple’s coding curricula, including over 100 community colleges across the US. And Apple coding academies, accelerators, and Entrepreneur Camps give up-and-coming developers the opportunity to apply the latest technologies to their apps, build their businesses, and market their ideas to a global audience.”
Apple itself employs 90,000 people across all 50 states. Plus, it fuels 450,000 manufacturing supply chain jobs through its partnerships with 9,000 American suppliers. Apple remains on track to fulfill its commitment to contribute $350 billion in the U.S. over a five-year period.
Apple’s fight with devs
Of course, not everything is as rosy as it might seem in the App Store world right now. Apple is currently battling some developers over its strict developer guidelines and 30% cut of App Store fees.
The fight has led to Epic Games, the maker of Fortnite, having all of its games booted out of the App Store. Other big names, such as Spotify, have also spoken out against Apple’s policies.