As the year starts and you are wondering where you should be focusing your app marketing efforts, perhaps it’s time to give India a long and hard look. India is certainly becoming a country where the art of app development is exploding, and searches for app development courses has grown 200% per year since 2014 and surpassed the US.

India is the world’s second largest smartphone market

There are over 220 million smartphone users in India, compared to an estimated 191 million in the US.  But there are 980 million mobile phone users (or around 700m if you are to believe Gartner), so the growth potential is huge.

App downloads exploding

It is estimated that 8 billion apps were downloaded in India in 2016. The growth rate is expected to be 26% per year, reaching 20 billion downloads in 2020.  According to Unity, India is on par with Japan on mobile games installs – which is quite significant when you consider the history of Japan in mobile apps and gaming:

More important is perhaps the country’s huge dominance of the Android platform:

Massive growth in the developer community

Next year, according to Business Insider, it is expected that 4 million Indian developers will focus on app development.  Interestingly, that is 90% of the total developer community in 2014 as estimated by Vision Mobile, so clearly there has been a huge growth in the developer community as a whole – but also in India.

More importantly, the way to reach developers may not all be through Google Play. For instance, Opera is the most downloaded browser in India, so you should certainly ensure Opera and local stores like Mobango are included in your distribution strategy (both stores supported by CodeNgo).  And the handsets to target may not be the typical ones you are used to, but heavily dominated by the Chinese manufacturers.  India rocked the world in mobile payments last year, and will no doubt continue the path of disruption in mobile apps in 2017.


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