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June 12, 2021
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Developers have earned $230 billion through the App Store to date

Developers have earned $230 billion through the App Store to date

June 7, 2021 | By Alissa McAloon

Apple's big WWDC event today detailed coming changes to the tech company's various platforms including updates like iOS 15, new iPadOS features, and a small handful of dev-friendly tools and updates.

One particularly timely piece of information shared during the broadcast this afternoon concerns the App Store or, specifically, how much cash flows through iOS's one and only app and game marketplace.

The App Store and how much both Apple and developers make through the storefront have, of course, been a hot topic as of late thanks to a certain high-profile legal showdown between Apple and Fortnite-maker Epic Games.

While Apple execs maintained during courtroom appearances last month that they don't specifically know if the once-standard 30 percent cut Apple takes from all App Store revenue makes it a profitable part of its business, we now have an update on roughly how much developers have earned on the App Store across its entire lifetime.

According to the company, developers have made over $230 billion dollars since the App Store first launched way back in 2008, though keep in mind that includes revenue for non-game apps and likely MacOS and iPad OS as well. Or, in Apple's words, it has paid developers $230 billion since the App Store first launched.

For reference, that's up quite a bit from $155 billion back in 2020 and $120 billion in 2019.

Until just recently, Apple pocketed 30 percent of all revenue that came through the App Store, meaning this latest $230 billion figure represents the 70 percent takehome developers typically see. That formula has shifted somewhat just this year and now allows App Store developers and publishers making under $1 million annually to keep 85 percent of their revenue instead of only 70 percent.

While that decision was announced after Epic Games criticized Apple for iOS and App Store practices that Epic says are bad for developers, Apple has since maintained that the decision was driven by difficulties surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic and its own desire to help smaller App Store developers build their businesses.

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