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Size of the Average iOS App Increased 16% in Six Months

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Apr 12, 2001
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According to a study by ABI Research, the average size of an iOS app increased by 16% from March to September 2012; iOS games have grown even faster, jumping 42% over that same time period.

The increase is thought to be partly the result of the iPad's new retina display, as well as a March increase in the over-the-air App Store download limit from 20MB to 50MB.

Universal apps include all the resources needed for the iPad and iPhone, regardless of which device the app is downloaded onto. These factors, combined with the new high-resolution graphics needed for the new iPad Retina display have ballooned app sizes.
The flipside of the increasing file-sizes is that the internal storage of smartphones and tablets is becoming a scarcer resource, as the device capabilities struggle to keep up with the requirements of apps and mobile content. Markkanen predicts, "Especially the consumers with 16GB devices are likely to become more conscious about what apps to keep and what to uninstall, so the developers' bar to impress will be getting even higher than it is now. This could also speed up the adoption of the mobile cloud as a storage remedy quite significantly."
Some have speculated that Apple could hold down the entry-level pricing on the iPad mini by offering an 8 GB model, but as universal apps with Retina iPad support push app download sizes ever higher, Apple is likely to maintain 16 GB as the floor for its tablet devices.

Even the iPhone has trended toward larger capacities, with Apple adding a 64 GB option for the iPhone 4S and now offering only the free iPhone 4 as an 8 GB device. Though it doesn't support downloadable apps, the new iPod Nano is also only offered in an 16GB capacity, dropping the 8GB capacity that the prior Nano was offered in.

Last month, Apple stopped selling any iPod Touch model in an 8GB capacity -- the smallest iPod touch nowadays is the 16GB 4th generation model, available for $199. The new 5th generation model starts at 32GB.

Article Link: Size of the Average iOS App Increased 16% in Six Months
 

iphone495

macrumors member
Sep 13, 2012
86
0
Not Surprised

Obviously. The screen of the iPhone is getting bigger, so will the size of apps.
 
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Medic311

macrumors 68000
Jul 30, 2011
1,658
56
This is why an 8GB iPad Mini will be insufficient


Keep in mind 8GB = ~6.3GB of actual storage


1 solid game w/ app data = 1GB (Metal Storm as an example)
Several photo albums and home videos = 1GB
Music albums and Podcasts = 1GB
1 downloaded iTunes HD movie = 2GB
3 magazines in Newstand app = 1GB
50 misc apps w/ app data = 1GB


Realizing Medic311 was correct that 8GB wasn't sufficient...priceless (or hilarious)


If the iPad Mini is designed for consuming written material (as the rumors are swirling about a focus on iBooks), 8GB will be extremely frustrating for many. Newstand chews through storage as Digital Magazines throw in enormous graphics and photos. Ever downloaded an issue of Wired? They are 450MB+ then throw in additional magazines like The Economist and Bloomberg which have audio components which soak up even more storage
 
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Chupa Chupa

macrumors G5
Jul 16, 2002
14,834
7,394
Yup. I don't see how an 8GB iPad is going to be all that satisfying, but suppose Apple will do it for direct price comparison to Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HD. I wonder if it will soon be killed off like the original and utterly useless 4GB iPhone was -- and that predates the App Store.
 
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jctevere

macrumors 6502
Feb 7, 2009
263
7
Bigger and Better apps! That's why I got the 64GB model this time around. Hopefully we will see the standard memories for the phones double come next revision...
 
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TimUSCA

macrumors 6502a
Mar 17, 2006
696
1,536
Aiken, SC
This is why an 8GB iPad Mini will be insufficient

Unless you're a gigantic app hoarder, I doubt it will make much difference in the grand scheme of things. 8GB might not be enough for some people, but that will be due to media, not apps.

Personally, 8GB is fine for me. I don't intend to use it for music, so it'll be enough for plenty of apps and a couple of movies.
 
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applegigs

macrumors member
Oct 19, 2011
75
50
Copenhagen, Denmark
Big mistake

The biggest mistake for purchasing Apple product was buying the New iPad 16GB. While I wasn't really sure if I am going to use it at all I went cheap and bought the 16GB.. over the next 3-4 weeks I soon realized that this was a big mistake the more I felt in love with the gadget. So I don't see how an 8 GB iPad mini would be enough.
 
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ChazUK

macrumors 603
Feb 3, 2008
5,390
24
Essex (UK)
This does slightly bug me on my iPad 2. Having assets in game for a screen that can't take advantage of it does seem wasteful.

This review on Monopoly sums it up for me.

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/monopoly-for-ipad/id405634168?mt=8

Was a great game... But after the most recent update for retina graphics it hogs nearly 1gb of space, which is approx 750mb more than the previous version! Not happy. This kind of thing will deter me from buying games and apps, which is the reason I bought this iPad, surely. Seems the people in charge don't get it... Create different installs for different hardware capabilities you silly ninny-muggins', or you'll end up losing fans, and ultimately; revenue. Kiss it. Peace.
 
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APlotdevice

macrumors 68040
Sep 3, 2011
3,120
3,790
I wish it were possible to only download the graphical components relevant to your particular device.
 
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ls1dreams

macrumors 6502a
Aug 13, 2009
577
199
Not shocking. We have to bundle images for both retina and iPhone 5 resolutions now.
 
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ChazUK

macrumors 603
Feb 3, 2008
5,390
24
Essex (UK)
Unless you're a gigantic app hoarder, I doubt it will make much difference in the grand scheme of things. 8GB might not be enough for some people, but that will be due to media, not apps.

Personally, 8GB is fine for me. I don't intend to use it for music, so it'll be enough for plenty of apps and a couple of movies.

Remember that an 8gb iPad would end up with just over 6gb usable for apps and mexia which isn't much at all. (I'm basing that on my iPhone 4 8gb)
 
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NOV

macrumors 6502
Mar 27, 2004
405
158
The Netherlands
One thing I noticed on my iPhone4 is that many apps are becoming slooower now that updates appear for iPhone5..
 
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bb426

macrumors 6502
Jun 7, 2011
414
41
California
I hate to bash on these statistics (in order to educate those who do not know how this stuff works), but this is almost useless information to most of us.

It's assumed that as we go along and technology improves, applications will become larger, especially graphic intensive ones. This in turn will require higher capacities for the devices that run these applications... something that has been happening on an almost exponential level for the past 40-50 years.

It's a no brainer. Spend time and money on more useful research. :p
 
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Medic311

macrumors 68000
Jul 30, 2011
1,658
56
Unless you're a gigantic app hoarder, I doubt it will make much difference in the grand scheme of things. 8GB might not be enough for some people, but that will be due to media, not apps.

Personally, 8GB is fine for me. I don't intend to use it for music, so it'll be enough for plenty of apps and a couple of movies.

Keep in mind 8GB = ~6.3GB of actual storage


1 solid game w/ app data = 1GB (Metal Storm as an example)
Some pictures = 1GB
Music albums and Podcasts = 1GB
1 downloaded iTunes HD movie = 2GB
3 magazines in Newstand = 1GB
50 misc apps w/ app data = 1GB


Realizing Medic311 was correct that 8GB wasn't sufficient...priceless (or hilarious)


If the iPad Mini is designed for consuming written material (as the rumors are swirling about a focus on iBooks), 8GB will be extremely frustrating for many. Newstand chews through storage as Digital Magazines throw in enormous graphics and photos. Ever downloaded an issue of Wired? They are 400MB+ then throw in additional magazines like The Economist and Bloomberg which have audio components which soak up even more storage
 
Comment

Rudy69

macrumors 6502a
Mar 30, 2009
688
1,195
The problem is supporting all the different devices requires major duplication of all the assets. Adding retina iPad support to my game made it almost impossible to keep it under 50mb
 
Comment

skeep5

macrumors 6502a
Mar 16, 2006
560
0
AZ
I'm really hoping the over the air limit gets taken away completely in a year or two once the 5S or whatever comes into play so every iPhone is on 4G and those of us developing large apps (with videos) don't have to have an asterisk * when we promote our product, i.e. ohh sorry you have to be on wifi to download! :(
 
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parapup

macrumors 65816
Oct 31, 2006
1,291
49
Soon there will be some analyst with shiny graphs claiming an "impressive" 16% growth in app download traffic after the release of iPhone 5.
 
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macsrcool1234

Suspended
Oct 7, 2010
1,551
2,127
Part of this is the extremely stupid way Apple handles universal apps. Instead of bundling everything into one app package, there's no reason not to split things up depending on the device. Incredible waste of space having high resolution files (iPad3) for devices such as the iPhone/iPod.
 
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reallynotnick

macrumors 6502a
Oct 21, 2005
960
523
Part of this is the extremely stupid way Apple handles universal apps. Instead of bundling everything into one app package, there's no reason not to split things up depending on the device. Incredible waste of space having high resolution files (iPad3) for devices such as the iPhone/iPod.

I totally agree, it's nice to be able to buy a universal App but I shouldn't have to have all the excess data installed on my device for other devices. Apple either needs to find a way to deal with this or start to seriously start upping storage (preferably both). I filled up 16GB of my 32GB iPhone 5 in a month, while I am still pissed I was charged $100 for the extra storage I would have been more upset up if I had the 16GB version.
 
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