25B Downloads And Google Play Is Still Growing Fast

This morning, Google announced that its Android Google Play store has surpassed 25 billion app installations. That is a big, round number but the surprise behind the announcement is the velocity at which the Android ecosystem is growing.

Android’s 25 billion mark comes just 10 months after Google announced 10 billion app downloads. It had taken Google nearly three years to reach 10 billion downloads and less than a year to exceed that by 150%. 

Every day, nearly 1.3 million Android smartphones are activated somewhere on Earth. In September, Google said it's mobile operating system was on 500 million smartphones. In contrast, Apple announced 400 million iPhone activations (not counting iPad and iPod Touch) at its iPhone 5 launch earlier this month. 

Apple is still ahead of Google in the app-volume race but Android has closed the gap. There were 700,000 apps in Apple’s App Store as of the iPhone 5 announcement. Android has 675,000, the closest that it has come to matching iOS app numbers. As of Apple’s World Wide Developer Conference in June, iOS users had downloaded nearly 30 billion apps, so, Android has some catching up to do. 

When Google announced 10 billion Android downloads, it celebrated with 10 days of apps for 10 cents. Google will do much the same this time around but expand the deals to all of the content found in Google Play, apps, movies, books and music. 

For the next five days, the number 25 is going to be found everywhere on Google Play. There will be apps and games from developers like Electronic Arts and Rovio for 25 cents. Book, movie and music collections such as “25 albums that changed the world” will abound. 

“Twenty-five billion is more than twice the distance, in miles, that the Voyager 1 spacecraft has travelled since its launch 35 years ago. It’s the amount of time, in minutes, that have passed since some of our earliest ancestors began to set foot in Europe. And now, thanks to all of you, it’s a Google Play milestone. We look forward to the next 25 billion,” wrote Jamie Rosenberg, Google’s director of digital content in a blog post this morning.

Here are some quirky facts about Android’s 25 billion downloads.

  • With a world population of 7 billion-plus, 25 billion apps amounts to 3.5 Android apps for every person alive. 
  • With 500 million Android activations, every Android phone ever activated has downloaded 50 apps.
  • Between iOS and Android there are 1,375,000 published apps. That equates to one app for every 5,384 person on Earth, give or take. 
  • By last December, 15 billion apps had been downloaded on Google Play. That is 46,012,269 app downloads everyday for 326 days.