In-App Spending Up 12.3 Percent On Christmas Day

Spending on in-app purchases jumped 12.3 percent on Monday (Dec. 25), with consumers around the globe spending money on in-app purchases, subscriptions and premium apps.

That’s according to marketing intelligence provider Sensor Tower Store Intelligence, which found Apple’s App Store and Google’s Google Play store had combined sales of $196 million on Christmas Day. The year before, combined sales reached just $174 million.

The $196 million excludes Android app purchases in China, but represents a roughly 5.2 percent year-over-year increase for mobile gaming apps and a roughly 66 percent increase for non-game apps. Spending in mobiles games hit $158 million this year, up from $150 million in 2016, while non-mobile game in-app spending hit $38 million, up $14 million from the $24 million last Christmas Day.

Entertainment apps saw big growth year-over-year, too, with the research firm pegging the increase at nearly 95 percent. Sensor Tower estimated $9.5 million was spent in entertainment apps like Netflix and HBO Now on Dec. 25, compared to $4.8 million in 2016. 

“As in years past, in-app spending should continue to remain higher than normal through the new year as consumers continue to explore the possibilities of their newly acquired devices and tap into app store gift cards,” Sensor Tower wrote in its report.

Apple and Google weren’t the only ones to have strong showings this holiday shopping season. Shortly after reporting the Echo Dot was Amazon’s top seller during the 2017 holiday weekend, Alexa, the artificial intelligence (AI) that powers the Dot, notched a victory of its own. According to reports, Alexa jumped to the top spot in the Apple App Store, and it has remained there since. This is Alexa’s first time in the number one spot.

So many consumers purchased or received Echo Dot devices over the holidays, in fact, that it is presently sold out on Amazon. Customers must add their names to a waitlist and live with the uncertainty of delivery “soon,” according to Amazon’s site. Alexa Buttons are also sold out.