Monetizing the News is (Finally) Working - App Store Revenue Up 370%

Ariel Ariel
6/24/23

This is a single insight from This Week in Apps - Business Booms. Check out the full article for more insights.


The newspaper business has been in financial trouble for a long time now thanks to the internet and social media.

On mobile, this trend seems to have switched direction over the last few years as App Store revenue for the top newspapers rose 370% since 2020.

I tracked revenue for the highest earning newspaper apps in the US App Store, which include the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Post, going all the way back to 2020 to see how it changed over time.

In Q1 of 2020, just as covid hit, the three brought in $4.4M of net revenue from the App Store, according to our estimates. Net means after Apple took its share. Looking at the entire year, revenue was growing, but not fast.

The three ended 2020 with $5.4M of net revenue from the App Store.

By the end of 2021, however, revenue started growing faster. The three saw an increase in quarterly revenue of 78%, and ended 2021 with $9.6M of net revenue in Q4, according to our estimates.

But it got better! Revenue continued to grow and peaked in Q3 of 2022 with $21.2M of net revenue from the App Store. An increase of 281% from Q1 of 2020.

Revenue didn't stay as high for too long and dropped to $16.3M by Q4. Still significantly higher than any other quarter prior. Q1 of 2023 saw a decent increase, up 16% from December.

In the same period, quarterly downloads dropped 40%.

This trend is now fairly common in the App Store. Fewer downloads but more revenue. Why? Because more apps are now investing into optimizing the conversion rate from a download to a paying user.

Are you?

App Intelligence for Everyone!

The insights in this report come right out of our App Intelligence platform, which offers access to download and revenue estimates, installed SDKs, and more! Learn more about the tools or schedule a demo with our team to get started.

Are you a Journalist? You can get access to our app and market intelligence for free through the Appfigures for Journalists program. Contact us for more details.

All figures included in this report are estimated. Unless specified otherwise, estimated revenue is always net, meaning it's the amount the developer earned after Apple and Google took their fee.

Tagged: #news

Related Resources

X's Mobile Revenue Continues to Drop for 3rd Consecutive Month - Longest Ever Decline
Insights
X's Mobile Revenue Continues to Drop for 3rd Consecutive Month - Longest Ever Decline

X's mobile revenue has been on a very weird trend in the last few months. And by weird I really mean negative. It's weir...

This is The Most Important Trend Every App Developer Must Know About
Insights
This is The Most Important Trend Every App Developer Must Know About

A few weeks ago I gave the opening talk at the App Promotion Summit in NYC and being the keynote I wanted to summarize w...