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What's your first week download counts for a FREE app?

synthesissynthesis Posts: 1,693Member
I am curious of what the consensus is for a "successful" first week of a FREE app. We had about 6500 downloads for our recent title which is our first FREE app release. It faired well in the ranks for iPad but struggled on the iPhone charts. What we don't really know is if its good, fair or average. We were featured on iTunes genre N&N but NOT on the device app store N&N.

What has been your download performance for a FREE app in its first week WITHOUT being featured (other then a genre N&N) or promoted via FAAD?



  • LumpAppsLumpApps Posts: 2,869Member
    My next question is what sells better? IPad or iPhone apps?
    Please say iPhone and give me a reason to buy one ;)
  • alexander144alexander144 Posts: 93Member
    So far I have 3.6k for Ball Rush over 2 days. It seems to be doing better on the iPad then iPhone.
  • synthesissynthesis Posts: 1,693Member
    As of about 2 months ago...there were about 20Million iPads on the market. There are many many many more iPhones/iPods on the market than that...estimates around 500M (i think...maybe 200M...can't remember exactly).

    As a result...I would say iPhone apps sell better than iPad apps. But there are about 3 times as many iPhone apps as iPad apps to compete with. If you do a Universal tap both devices...but you don't have any data in your reports from Apple as to how many iPad vs. iPhone apps you sold.

    Let us know what you week totals the first 2 days are usually sharply higher than the daily average over 7 days...unless you go viral and/or break into the TOP 50 games! :) We received nearly half of our downloads for the entire debut week within the first 36 hours but couldn't get above 150 All Games on either device. The device appStore only shows the top 60 on iPad and top 100 on iPhone...and hardly anyone shops for apps on iTunes. That is why its soooo hard to knock out the top 100 as they park and ride because of their device visibility.
  • scitunesscitunes Posts: 4,047Member, Sous Chef
    Synthesis, good to see you, man. How've you been?
  • TouchTiltGamesTouchTiltGames Posts: 1,162Member
    Put Rodent Rage for free with ads last week, it did about 30,000 in downloads.
  • design219design219 Posts: 2,273Member
    Hey synthesis, long time no see.
  • OaklandasfanOaklandasfan Posts: 213Member
    in my 1st week I got 666 downloads. no kidding.
  • anithmukanithmuk Posts: 235Member
    I got about 30 LOL my apps fail so hard :(
  • BSideGamesBSideGames Posts: 392Member
    About 10000 over a free weekend on my game The FlinglingsHd, but I only get about 1-5 sales now that it's .99 cents again.
    It was cool to be 3rd in france for a day or so :)
  • quantumsheepquantumsheep Posts: 8,188Member
    As a breakout fan, I downloaded your app. Have to say, graphically it was very nice (I've never doubted your art skills) but as soon as I saw the word 'Lives bank' I had a horrible feeling you were going to ask people to pay for lives.

    It's not just you, of course. Beyond The Tech's Rico also did this - though I believe he started his app out at $1.99. I got it when it went free shortly after release. A nicely presented game, but as soon as I saw I had to pay to keep my progress, it was deleted from my phone. Much in the same way your own app was when I realised I had to pay for lives.

    I'll be completely honest and upfront and say that as a lifelong gamer and now consumer of apps, I abhor this kind of in-app purchase. I think what Joe has planned for Lost City, with its complimentary but not essential players guide as an IAP is the way to go.

    The games industry as a whole is headed in this direction, but it's not one I personally agree with. See Portal 2, for instance (fortunately, the DLC offered is not essential to the enjoyment of the game, so it's not as bad as some games out there!)

    But I'm curious, and I'm wondering, how many of the 6500 people that downloaded your app for free did you make money from?

    If it's a high percentage then it would certainly seem to justify this practice, and the 'relatively' low download figures would be disappointing, but not disastrous.

    If not, would it have not been as profitable to release it as a paid app? (I see you have plans to do just that - comparing the figures would give useful data to those still on the fence about these things).

    I still personally think it's a strategy doomed to failure, much like iAds was/is. People here were screaming for iAds, and that didn't turn out so well. I can see many here wanting in-app purchases. Personally, I think this will turn out to be another disappointing cluster**** for many.

    I do realise that you can buy more lives 'in-game' for coins collected btw. It's a nice idea, but monetising the continued play of a game just seems… wrong - especially on what essentially is the 'lite' version for a full game.

    If you replay from death, you only get one life back too, not the three you start with. With no leaderboards either (and why not? You certainly have the resources to put them in) there seems to be no impetus for me to *want* to carry on and give you money so I can get a better score to claim one-upmanship on the rest of your audience!

    Additionally, competition in the 'free app' market is just as fierce as in the paid store. With stuff like 'Appshopper' and 'FreeAppADay' promotions, I can get free, whole games, whenever I like. Sometimes there's a perceived greater value too if an app *was* $.99 and is now free for a day or week or whatever.

    Personally, I actually buy games I'm interested in. And I've bought a lot, most at launch prices. If I've missed something and it's free, or down to $.99, I snap it up. If it has IAP, I read up about it to make sure that aspect is not essential to my enjoyment of the game.

    Perhaps it's the choice of game? I like breakout, as I mentioned. But there are so many alternatives already available for that. I could, for example, download the Atari retro collection for free and buy breakout for $.99, along with three other games. Which I can then play as many times as I like, without having to buy more lives! (I ended up buying the whole collection for $15 - love my retro stuff!).

    Lastly, perhaps your file size is a contributing factor? Over 20MB will limit the amount of downloads you typically get, and you know the reasons why yourself without me having to explain. On a related note, I wanted to try your orb garden game, but decided against it. 100MB (or close enough) is too big when I can fit five or more smaller games into the same space!
    For that reason, I believe that the majority of your downloads would have been from iPad users - they are typically used more indoors, where having a 3G connection, and the 20MB limit imposed on that, is not a problem.

    Anyway, I hope you take this as constructive criticism. You asked about typical free downloads, and we've had a range of responses from a lot less, to a shitload more. I've tried to offer some reasoning as to why that might be, and I'm genuinely intrigued as to the free to paid convert ratio.


    QS :D

    Dr. Sam Beckett never returned home...

  • POLYGAMePOLYGAMe Posts: 3,470Member
    Max Vector had around 20k downloads in the first night it went free... unfortunately that didn't translate to sales when I put the price back up! LOL.
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