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China's iOS App Store overtakes Japan's and is continuing to rocket

For the first time ever, revenue from China's App Store indeed overtook revenue from Japan's, and this marks a significant milestone for the Chinese iOS app economy
April 16, 2016

It looks like China's App Store market is continuing to boom. In fact, for this year's first fiscal quarter (ending in March), revenues from China's App Store surpassed sales in Japan's for the first time ever. At this rate, it shouldn't be long until China's App Store becomes even bigger than the United States'.

The data comes from App Annie (via AppleInsider), which explains that China's booming App Store's growth has accelerated by around 2.2 times between Q1 and Q2 2015, and is continuing to rocket. Much of China's App Store growth is centered on in-app purchases (IAPs), which are popular among a number of the country's most-popular iOS titles. It seems China really has moved towards a “freemium” model, where games are free to download but riddled with IAPs. This is resulting in huge revenue from the country's App Store.

Indeed, revenue from China's App Store overtook Japan's revenue for Q1 2016, and it's the first time this has happened, ever. This is something of a miletone for China's iOS app economy, which has indeed been continuing to grow since its launch.

At this rate, revenue from the Chinese App Store is even on track to overtake revenue from the U.S. App Store. And this is a staggering thought. For now, there's still a big(ish) difference between the two markets: some 30 percent separates China from the United States. But despite this, as AppleInsider notes, “the country could assume the top spot as soon as this year, however, or possibly in 2017.”