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Go Free to make money on iOS–57% of the Top Grossing Games on the US Appstore are Free

By on December 20, 2011
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My analysis of the top grossing apps of 2011 yesterday covered the UK market. Today, I’ll look at the US App Store Top Grossing apps, based on the 2011 Rewind feature.

Games dominate the appstore in the US, with a full 80% of the top grossing apps. Only one non-game app appears in the top 20 (a navigation app called MotionX GPS Drive).

57 of the top 100 grossing apps in the US Appstore are free. To me, that is clear evidence that this business model is proven and validated. 15% are priced at $0.99. There is also a spike at a premium price point, with 8 apps priced at $4.99.

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Rank

Title

Price

Category

1

Tap Zoo

Free

Games

2

Angry Birds

$ 0.99

Games

3

Zombie Farm

Free

Games

4

Tap Pet Hotel

Free

Games

5

Poker by Zynga

Free

Games

6

Smurfs Village

Free

Games

7

Texas Poker

Free

Games

8

Haypi Kingdom

Free

Games

9

Infinity Blade

$ 5.99

Games

10

MotionX GPS Drive

$ 0.99

Navigation

11

Call of Duty: Zombies

$ 4.99

Games

12

Farmville by Zynga

Free

Games

13

Angry Birds Seasons

$ 0.99

Games

14

Plants vs. Zombies

$ 2.99

Games

15

iMobsters

Free

Games

16

Kingdoms at War

Free

Games

17

World War

Free

Games

18

Cut the Rope

$ 0.99

Games

19

Original Gangstaz

Free

Games

20

Restaurant Story

Free

Games

21

Angry Birds Rio

$ 0.99

Games

22

Gun Bros

Free

Games

23

Shazam

Free

Music

24

Hipstamatic

$ 1.99

Photo and Video

25

Grindr Xtra

$ 2.99

Social Networking

26

Bakery Story

Free

Games

27

Camera+

Free

Photo and Video

28

The Sims 3

$ 6.99

Games

29

Tom Tom USA

$ 39.99

Navigation

30

Tiny Chef

Free

Games

31

We Rule Deluxe

Free

Games

32

Crime City

Free

Games

33

High Noon

Free

Games

34

Top Girl

Free

Games

35

Racing Live

Free

Games

36

Text Now & Voice

Free

Social Networking

37

Bloons TD 4

$ 2.99

Games

38

Fashion Story

Free

Games

39

NBA Jam by EA Sports

$ 0.99

Games

40

Zombie Gunship

$ 0.99

Games

41

Original Gangstaz Rock

Free

Games

42

Vampires Live

Free

Games

43

Need for Speed Hot Pursuit

$ 4.99

Games

44

Pocket Frogs

Free

Games

45

Real Racing 2

$ 4.99

Games

46

Global War

Free

Games

47

Trade Nations

Free

Games

48

Modern Combat 2: Black Pegasus

$ 6.99

Games

49

Tiny Tower

Free

Games

50

City Story

Free

Games

51

Golfshot: Golf GPS

$ 29.99

Sports

52

Navigon North America

$ 38.99

Navigation

53

Farm Story

Free

Games

54

Pocket God

$ 0.99

Games

55

Tap Fish 2

Free

Games

56

Valor

Free

Games

57

Textfree with Voice

Free

Lifestyle

58

Card Ace: Casino

Free

Games

59

Dragonvale

Free

Games

60

Lil’ Pirates

Free

Games

61

Uno

$ 0.99

Games

62

Gun Club 2

Free

Games

63

Word Lens

Free

Travel

64

I am T-Pain 2.0

$ 2.99

Music

65

N.O.V.A. 2

$ 6.99

Games

66

Cityville

Free

Games

67

Street Fighter IV

$ 4.99

Games

68

Tap Tap Revenge 4

Free

Games

69

Homerun Battle 3D

$ 0.99

Games

70

Zombie Café

Free

Games

71

Kingdoms Live

Free

Games

72

The Moron Test

$ 0.99

Entertainment

73

Hanging with Friends

$ 1.99

Games

74

Flighttrack

$ 4.99

Travel

75

Whitepages

Free

Reference

76

Diner Dash Full

$ 2.99

Games

77

Navigon USA

$ 29.99

Navigation

78

Contract Killer

Free

Games

79

Dead Space

$ 0.99

Games

80

Cartoon Wars 2: Heroes

$ 0.99

Games

81

Rock Band

$ 4.99

Games

82

Family Feud

$ 2.99

Games

83

Metalstorm: Wingman

Free

Games

84

Original Gangstaz HD

Free

Games

85

Wheel of Fortune Platinum

$ 4.99

Games

86

Ultimate Guitar Tabs

$ 2.99

Music

87

Justin.tv

$ 4.99

Entertainment

88

Air Penguin

$ 0.99

Games

89

Order and Chaos Online

$ 6.99

Games

90

Flighttrack Pro

$ 9.99

Travel

91

Cooking Mama

$ 3.99

Games

92

Touch Pets Dogs 2

Free

Games

93

Tap Resort Party

Free

Games

94

GPS by TeleNav

Free

Navigation

95

Stick Sunt Biker

$ 0.99

Games

96

Mega Jump

Free

Games

97

Marvel Comics

Free

Books

98

Coin Dozer

Free

Games

99

Tap Petshop

Free

Games

100

Tap Zoo: Arctic

Free

Games

About Nicholas Lovell

Nicholas is the founder of Gamesbrief, a blog dedicated to the business of games. It aims to be informative, authoritative and above all helpful to developers grappling with business strategy. He is the author of a growing list of books about making money in the games industry and other digital media, including How to Publish a Game and Design Rules for Free-to-Play Games, and Penguin-published title The Curve: thecurveonline.com