A third? That’s actually higher than we’d have expected, given the dominance of free and freemium apps on the stores of Apple and Google. Still, 33% is the percentage that’ll pay for apps in the US this year according to eMarketer – 80.1m US consumers willing to pay upfront for apps, which the research firm actually thinks is an increase on the last two years, with the percentage of payers having risen from 27.2% in 2013 and 32.7% in 2014.
That’s not expected to continue. “The preference for free, ad-supported apps is rising among mobile users, and the share of smartphone and tablet users who pay for apps will actually tick downward over the next four years, despite the continued growth in the number of smartphone and tablet users and the number of app users overall,” said eMarketer’s Cathy Boyle. But note, this is willingness to pay *upfront* – so these figures don’t include people willing to buy in-app purchases and subscriptions, which has become the most lucrative source of app income for companies from Spotify and Pandora to Smule.