Another milestone Apple is happy to brag about: It says it has served up 2 billion apps for the iPhone and iPod touch from its iTunes store. How do we put that in context? A couple different ways.
For starters, let’s note that the velocity of apps Apple (AAPL) is delivering is increasing: It took Steve Jobs and co a little more than a year to serve up the first 1.5 billion apps, which averages out at 4.1 million downloads per day. But it moved the next 500 million apps within 76 days. That’s a 6.6 milllion per day average.
Next, let’s acknowledge that while the money Apple makes from the app store is secondary to its core hardware business, it’s still a sizeable amount.
Even if you assume that the majority of apps are downloaded for free, the remainder may still be generating sales of $200 million a month, mobile ad network AdMob guesstimates. Apple keeps 30% of that, which works out to be $720 million a year. Not bad for a side business.