Half of China's app developers lost money in Q3

An increasing number of app developers are now losing money in the country, indicating a harder time for these players to survive with investment slowing down and homogenized products flooding the market.
Written by Cyrus Lee, Contributor

According to the latest research by iiMedia Research, in the first quarter of the year, only 29.7 percent and 15.2 percent of Chinese apps developers reported either profit gains or flat growth, respectively, during the three months while 55.1 percent indicated they could not make ends meet.

The slowdown in investments in mobile Internet since the start of 2012 has aggravated the plight of the survival of Chinese mobile application developers. On the other hand, the profit model of most mobile Internet products remains unclear in China, which, together with the homogenization of products flooding the market, have imposed great pressure to these apps developers for survival in the country nowadays, said the report.

Only 24.3 percent were individual developers, down significantly from the previous quarter, said the report. App development teams with members fewer than five people now accounted for 60.2 percent of the market in China, compared with teams with over 20 members, which only accounted for less than 8 percent of the market today.

Due to the poor market conditions, most of these app developers are now at the edge of profitability. Some individual developers have finally decided to quit. Some also may have started to team up with other individual developers to form a small team these days, according to the report.

The report showed that these apps developers most wanted funding and marketing support in China, which were highlighted by 58.5 percent and 43.9 percent, respectively. Some 34.4 percent and 30.2 percent of developers also expressed desire for shared user data and personnel support, respectively.

Most small mobile apps developers showed less concern about capital markets and market exposure, which had restricted them in terms of market growth and expansion, according to the report.

The report also showed that the proportion of developers focusing on Android platform continued to rise in China, to 80.7 percent in the third quarter, while those for Apple iOS declined to 12.3 percent. Some 3.5 percent of developers created apps for Windows Phone platform, according to the report.


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