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Apple App Store vs. Google Play Store: Which made more money in 2012?

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Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS operating systems are undoubtedly the most popular mobile platforms, and a new report has compared both app stores to see which one raked in more cash this year.

While Google’s online app store is showing rapid growth, Apple’s marketplace more than doubled these profits. According to app analytics firm Distimo, the Google Play Store’s combined daily revenue has grown by 43 percent. Apple’s, in contrast, only grew by 21 percent. In terms of growth over the entire year, Apple’s App Store has seen an increase 51 percent in the 20 nations analyzed by Distimo. This includes Australia, Canada, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, the UK, and the US.

When it comes down to it, although Google’s store showed the most growth with its combined daily revenue, Apple smoked its competitor. The App Store earned $15 million in average daily revenue in November while the Google Play store only reached $3.5 million. Apple’s success can be largely attributed to in-app payments, seeing as this accounted for 69 percent of its overall revenues. This number is up by 16 percent compared to January 2012, the report said.

This surge of in-app purchases has caused app prices to slump down by 8 percent compared to last January for Apple’s iPad. However, as of last month, app prices were up by 16 percent for the iPhone, according to Distimo. The analytics firm noted that some app publishers are still seeing great success using a paid-only strategy, and this year 35 percent of revenue from the top 10 publishers resulted from one-off fees.

Despite the iPhone’s popularity, Android dominates an overwhelming portion of the smartphone market share. This is why it comes as no surprise that Apple’s iPad accounted for most of the iOS platform’s revenue growth. Daily revenues for the iPhone increased by 40 percent, while apps for the iPad saw a 71 percent jump.

Instagram placed as number one on Distimo’s list of the top 10 apps for Apple’s App Store, while Street View took this number one spot for Google’s Play store. Other runner ups for both platforms included Facebook, YouTube and Gmail.