James Daniels of Apex Designs, author of GTA-like Payback [App Store, $4.99] for the iPhone and iPod touch, has made a post to his website detailing the notable sales success of Payback during its first two months in the App Store.
Since Payback made its App Store debut (at $6.99) in late January it has generated gross revenues of $400,000 across 65,000 copies sold. The lite version [App Store, Free], which appeared about two weeks ago, has seen roughly half a million downloads.
As Daniels points out, the sales he's had so far represent only 0.2% of the iPhone platform user base, speaking to the enormity of the App Store market.
And while Apex Designs has done quite well with this action / RPG, Daniels knows it's not success stories all around when it comes to the App Store and offers some advice to Apple.
We do have one criticism though: it's vitally important to get visibility on the device, so getting into the Top 50 can really boost sales - unfortunately, the paid app charts are sorted by sales, which is inevitably going to skew things towards the cheaper apps and so will make it harder for relatively expensive apps like ours to break through (in fact, we have only occasionally been in the charts in most countries).
We've been lucky (and the lite version certainly helped), but others haven't been so fortunate. We'd therefore like to humbly suggest a solution to Apple - please sort the paid apps by revenue not by units sold. This would effectively allow the better value apps to rise to the top irrespective of price, giving them the visibility they deserve. This would benefit customers and developers alike because it would encourage quality software rather than cheap novelties.
Congrats, Apex. Payback has come a long way since its humble Amiga beginnings.