Study Finds Developers Really Update Apps For Marketing Purposes

Posted 7/9/2015 10:09:36 AM by RICHARD HARRIS, Executive Editor

Study Finds Developers Really Update Apps For Marketing Purposes
A recent study by the UK’s Centre for Competition Policy (CCP) provides a strong argument that developers who update their apps frequently, may do so more for app marketing purposes than to improve an app’s functionality itself.

The paper, Updates Management in Mobile Applications: iTunes vs Google Play, was authored by Stefano Comino - Universita di Udine (Italy); Fabio M. Manenti - Universita di Padova (Italy) and Franco Mariuzzo - University of East Anglia (UK). According to the researchers the process they approached included, “We develop a stylized theoretical model to describe why and when updates should be released. We then use an unbalanced panel with characteristics on the top 1,000 apps on iTunes and Google Play stores for five European countries to empirically test our theoretical predictions.”

Ok, that last paragraph might seem like a mouthful for us lesser educated souls, so what did they find? According to the authors, “Our results confirm that updates boost downloads and are more likely to be released when the app is experiencing a poor performance. We interpret this finding as evidence that app developers use updates as a ‘bet for resurrection’ strategy.”

I don’t normally recommend reading academic articles. however if you have an app in the app stores, you should take the time to learn what the researchers found on the approach to minor and major updates, differing strategies for iOS vs Android, and the update strategies that did not have a positive impact on downloads. You can find the full report at the link provided here.

Read More


About the author: RICHARD HARRIS, Executive Editor

As the Publisher and Editor for App Developer Magazine, Richard has several industry recognitions and endorsements from tech companies such as Microsoft, Apple and Google for accomplishments in the mobile market. He was part of the early Google AFMA program, and also involved in the foundation of Google TV. He has been developing for mobile since 2003 and serves as CEO of Moonbeam Development, a mobile app company with 200 published titles in various markets throughout the world. Richard is also the founder of LunarAds, a mobile cross-promotion and self-serv mediation network for developers. He has been a featured presenter at trade-shows and conferences, and stays active with new projects relating to mobile development.

Subscribe to App Developer Daily

Latest headlines delivered to you daily.