Most paid-for Android apps have been downloaded fewer than 100 times, according to research that highlights the difficulty of making money from the mobile platform.
While 80 percent of paid-for apps haven't been downloaded more than 100 times, only 20 percent of free apps have been downloaded so infrequently, according to analyst firm Distimo.
“Looking at paid applications in the Google Android Market, downloads are significantly lower than they are for free applications,” the report said.
“These figures reveal how challenging it is for Android developers to monetise applications in the Google Android Market using a one-off fee monetisation model.
"This may be one of the reasons why the majority of the applications are free in Google Android Market, in contrast to the Apple App Store.”
Although the top sellers do raise cash, only a tiny proportion of developers can claim significant success, with only 0.1 percent of all paid-for apps selling more than 50,000 copies.
By contrast, 6.6 percent of free Android apps have passed the 50,000 landmark, with 1 percent attracting more than 500,000 downloads.