2013 mobile sales signal free-to-play dominance

By Steve Watts, Dec 19, 2013 9:15am PST

Apple's list of Games of the Year also included a peek at the top-paid and top-grossing games of the year. This year's inclusions indicate that free-to-play is the most financially successful business model on iOS, as it accounts for all ten of the top-grossing apps of 2013.

The top-grossing app of the year on iOS is (unsurprisingly) Candy Crush Saga. Second place went to Clash of Clans, while the best-selling paid app is Minecraft: Pocket Edition. Note, of course, that Minecraft sold the most at a pricey-for-iOS sticker of $6.99, but still placed in 11th on the grossing charts behind several other free-to-play games.

VentureBeat reports that as of November, 92% of all apps were free to play on iOS, and 98% on Google Play. That figure represents a 77% jump on iOS from June, and 89% on Google Play. Those figures also note that Candy Crush finished second on Google Play, making it likely the top grossing mobile game of the year across both platforms. However, Clash of Clans finished a relatively close second, considering it was only released in November.

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