My Photo

Ordering Information

Tomi on Twitter is @tomiahonen

  • Follow Tomi on Twitter as @tomiahonen
    Follow Tomi's Twitterfloods on all matters mobile, tech and media. Tomi has over 8,000 followers and was rated by Forbes as the most influential writer on mobile related topics

Book Tomi T Ahonen to Speak at Your Event

  • Contact Tomi T Ahonen for Speaking and Consulting Events
    Please write email to tomi (at) tomiahonen (dot) com and indicate "Speaking Event" or "Consulting Work" or "Expert Witness" or whatever type of work you would like to offer. Tomi works regularly on all continents

Tomi on Video including his TED Talk

  • Tomi on Video including his TED Talk
    See Tomi on video from several recent keynote presentations and interviews, including his TED Talk in Hong Kong about Augmented Reality as the 8th Mass Media


Blog powered by Typepad

« Last of Top 10 Smartphone Makers reports Q4 sales: Sony hits 11.9M units stays safely inside Top 10 and returns to profits | Main | Smartphone Year 2014 Final Stats: Brand Top 10, OS Top 4, Installed Base, Regional Split; and Bloodbath Q4 Results (Updated) »

February 06, 2015


Wayne Borean

That's some imaginative stuff.



Did I just count 8 apps and 6 non-apps?
What do you predict the spread to be in few years now that "peak app" has been passed?

Tomi T Ahonen

Hi Wayne, AndThis and LeeBase

About apps vs services. A smartphone app allows using far richer abilities of the mobile phone than a service built on SMS or HTML or voice etc. But smartphone apps reach a TINY slice of the mass market compared to services. Android which now has over 1 Billion users only reaches 1/3 the reach of HTML and 1/4 the reach of MMS and 1/6 the reach of SMS. iOS is one third the size of Android and no other smartphone apps are even worth developing mass market apps for (business apps yes, for Blackberry in some markets).

We are far past peak Apps as most existing apps are now zombies and their update and development has ended and their developers have moved onto more lucrative parts of the tech space.

That being said, if you want to WIN an award for innovation, it is difficult to do that with SMS that has existed commercially for 22 years or HTML that has been on mobile phones for 16 years or MMS thats been around for 14 years. These are very basic platforms that work broadly but are limited in what they can do in terms of radical innovations. You want to do say Augmented Reality or the clever logic of the user interface 'corrections' for the handicapped etc that needs a smartphone and thus many innovations will continue to be done on apps.

Incidentially, as smartphones pass 50% penetration rates in ever more countries and Android has run away with all markets except the USA and Japan, it is perfectly valid to also do apps - on Android - today, in those markets where smartphones exceed 50% of total handset population - all of Western Europe, North America, Advanced Asia, Oceania, and the rich Gulf states of the Middle East. Nothing wrong with doing apps where they are a mass market platform. Only the app developers should be aware that its still a lottery in terms of who makes money, except in gaming where odds are 'hits business' type.

Tomi Ahonen :-)


I thought Leebase was going to be banned for life if he mentions apps outside the app metrics blog post or smth?



Most people seem to have difficulties comparing apps to other industries. With books 1 out of 10 succeeds but that's books that get published. If we include self published books or those that are written and never really printed, we get a very different idea of how things are done with the books industry. Maybe one book out of 1 000 - 10 000 brings the author enough money to so that the writer can live on that. Then again those published books are usually profitable only to the publisher and not to the author. One book out of 10 may be profitable to the publisher but it doesn't mean the author would be able to get a living. Far from it.

This is relevant to this post because to understand apps we must be able to compare them to other industries. To compare apps to other industries we need to have a basic understanding about the other industries.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Available for Consulting and Speakerships

  • Available for Consulting & Speaking
    Tomi Ahonen is a bestselling author whose twelve books on mobile have already been referenced in over 100 books by his peers. Rated the most influential expert in mobile by Forbes in December 2011, Tomi speaks regularly at conferences doing about 20 public speakerships annually. With over 250 public speaking engagements, Tomi been seen by a cumulative audience of over 100,000 people on all six inhabited continents. The former Nokia executive has run a consulting practise on digital convergence, interactive media, engagement marketing, high tech and next generation mobile. Tomi is currently based out of Helsinki but supports Fortune 500 sized companies across the globe. His reference client list includes Axiata, Bank of America, BBC, BNP Paribas, China Mobile, Emap, Ericsson, Google, Hewlett-Packard, HSBC, IBM, Intel, LG, MTS, Nokia, NTT DoCoMo, Ogilvy, Orange, RIM, Sanomamedia, Telenor, TeliaSonera, Three, Tigo, Vodafone, etc. To see his full bio and his books, visit Tomi Ahonen lectures at Oxford University's short courses on next generation mobile and digital convergence. Follow him on Twitter as @tomiahonen. Tomi also has a Facebook and Linked In page under his own name. He is available for consulting, speaking engagements and as expert witness, please write to tomi (at) tomiahonen (dot) com

Tomi's eBooks on Mobile Pearls

  • Pearls Vol 1: Mobile Advertising
    Tomi's first eBook is 171 pages with 50 case studies of real cases of mobile advertising and marketing in 19 countries on four continents. See this link for the only place where you can order the eBook for download

Tomi Ahonen Almanac 2009

  • Tomi Ahonen Almanac 2009
    A comprehensive statistical review of the total mobile industry, in 171 pages, has 70 tables and charts, and fits on your smartphone to carry in your pocket every day.

Alan's Third Book: No Straight Lines

Tomi's Fave Twitterati