Books are now more popular than games for iPhone. Paid book applications represent 27,000 of the Apple App Store’s 150,000 applications, making them the most abundant type of application on the App Store.
It’s worth noting that of the 150,000 apps, around 75% are paid applications while 25% are free.
TechCrunch reports that number bodes very well for Apple’s soon-to-be-released iPad, of which a big selling point will be the new iBooks application. There has been a lot of talk about how the iPad won’t hurt the Kindle because the Amazon device’s e-ink makes reading more enjoyable. And while it’s true that e-ink is easier on your eyes (thank a backlit screen), it seems that iPhone owners simply don’t care — again, great news for the iPad.
MG Singer’s article goes on to state that in terms of overall app numbers, games still rule, with over 28,000 of them in the store. But a much higher percentage of those are free versus the percentage of free book apps. All told, both games and book are far and away the two most popular categories in the App Store, with entertainment in third with just over 20,000 apps. And the numbers drop quickly from there. Education is the fourth most popular category, but that means only 10,000+ apps.
But the App Store is growing so rapidly that these figures are always changing. It will be interesting to see what happens when the iPad comes out and how Apple handles its book sales for that format.