I have an app called ProPassword on the App Store. It’s a pretty simple app and it’s free. The only source of income are iAds. I was hoping to at least make the $99 I paid for the Apple developer program and I succeeded. Still, I don’t consider it a big success financially, although it has been an incredible learning experience.
Up until today I made $158.48 and it does not look like it’s going to be a lot more.
One of the largest iPhone related blogs in germany wrote about my app and the first spike in revenue came as a surprise to me. $15.51 in a single day was something I really appreciated, but I did not expect the extremely fast decline afterwards : $3.05 - $1.92 - $0.81 - $0.24. I was down to almost zero in just four days. At that moment the app had about 2,000 downloads.
Something crazy happened on June 2nd. My app was featured as “New and Noteworthy” in the german App Store and was downloaded about 5000 times in the first four days. Income was $50 in those four days. I was very happy and during the time the app remained in the “New and Noteworthy” feature it made between $20 and $4 a day, eCPM was between $29 and $8.50. A very cool income for an extremely simple app that does nothing but generate some passwords.
I released an upgrade on June 14th, which lead to some more revenue. Almost three times as much on June 15th ($9.34) as on June 12th ($3.80). 3,000 users upgraded until today.
Now the app has been removed from “New and Noteworthy” and revenue is down to about $0.50a day. There have been over 15.000 downloads and my app was at something like the 120th position of the top downloads in the german App Store. It was a cool ride while it lasted.
My conclusion so far is, that I won’t try the iAd route again. It’s just too hard to break even with an app that way. There might be some exceptions with apps that are used daily, like maybe TV guide apps or the like, but an app, that is only used sporadically will probably not make enough money to justify the development costs. My next app is going to be a 99ct one, we’ll see how well that works.
Oh and tell your friends about ProPassword. Maybe I’ll see another spike I can write about ;)