Mobile Application popularity

Few days back I was wondering about how somebody determines the popularity of a mobile application.When I say mobile application , I mean the application developed by somebody and distributed by these popular mobile devices like iPhone, Blackberry, Android based phones etc.

This question came to me when Apple announced that there were 1 billion downloads from their app store few days back.Determining a popularity of a website is quite simple. You can get the statistics of the unique visitors, number of hits and other parameters that can determine its popularity. But when it comes to  mobile application, the parameters are quite dynamic for the following reasons

  • A application could have been downloaded n times, but this does not necessarily mean that its quite popular. A user would have downloaded it sometime back and simply kept it idle or would have even deleted it.
  • There should be some way to determine the most used mobile application which along with the number of downloads would tell accurately how popular is that application
  •  I agree that a mobile application that does not use an internet connection is like a traditional desktop app and it is almost impossible to determine the usage of that unless the mobile maker provides some API to determine this.
  •  I also wonder how Apple rates its top application in the AppStore, I belive its just based on the number of downloads
I hope mobile makers or its software makers like Apple/Google/RIM etc are hearing this and they would include this capability in their future releases. In the meantime if anybody has more inputs/suggestions to determine any mobile application popularity, please do leave a comment or share your thought. Its highly appreciated!

Author: pradeep