The Curse of the Mobile App Store “Top 20”

What developer doesn’t want to see their app among the most popular apps in the industry? Every development team wants their apps to get to the top, but it is easier said than done.

The number of mobile apps is growing at a tremendous rate, and the race to the top 10 or 20 of an app store is a constant struggle. Few developers see their apps remain at the top of an app store chart, even the really strong vendors.

For example, take the new app Amazing Alex. It launched hitting the number one position of the iOS app store chart in merely eight hours after launch. However, only 18 days later it dropped to number 10. Amazing Alex comes from development team Rovio, who also launched the hugely successful app Angry Birds. So why the sudden drop for Amazing Alex?

As explained by Tero Kuittinen of BGR, it is because of an app store curse:

“[Rovio’s] original mega hit, ‘Angry Birds,’ took more than four months to reach the top of the chart — but once it did, it stayed in the top-10 for more than two years. Yes, Rovio’s first franchise stayed in the top-10 for two years — and its second will fall out of the top-10 after just a few weeks. This is a pattern repeated by many of the best mobile game developers in the world. The app market is that tough.”

He goes on to list other vendors that also experienced this same pattern such as – Halfbrick Studios, Lima Sky, and Imangi.

Perhaps some developers find themselves confident after their first success and slightly overlook testing? Or is there really some sort of strange Harry Potter-like curse going on here? Let us know what you think in the comments section.


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