I said last week that if I didn’t have anything to say on the Coronavirus situation, that I’d keep quiet. That lasted exactly one week as I can’t avoid talking about this report from AppFigures.

You’ll need to have an AppFigures account, with your App Store account connected to view the report, but if you do that you’ll see two years worth of app download trend data, broken down by category and country. It’s fascinating.

Want a summary? This situation has caused the most significant spike in App Store downloads in years. The numbers in the majority of categories are hugely increased over where they were a month ago, and they have been trending even higher in the last week. Of course, some categories are negatively affected. Predictably Travel is suffering, but also Finance, and quite strangely, Music. 🤷‍♂️ Everything else is up, but especially Business, Education, Social Networking, and Productivity apps.

Also, if you look at the data for Spain and Italy, where the situation is the most dire right now the numbers are up even further. I hope more than anything that what happened in those countries is not going to happen elsewhere, but I fear this is just the start of what we’re going to see. As a result, I expect to see the App Store numbers rise in other countries too. Will it be a spike, and then a crash again when the world starts to recover? Probably, but we could be in our current situation for a long time.

None of this is good, and I’m not celebrating any part of what’s happening, but what it does show is that our industry probably going to be less affected than the vast majority of others.

That said, it’s still a tough time for many developers. So tough in fact that there’s an effort going on across the community to support independent app developers. I urge you to check that out and help where you can, but I’m hopeful that given the numbers mentioned above that any dips in sales are temporary.

What I must say though is that while I support the efforts to support the other members of our community, I can’t write this without saying that the people who need the most help are those who don’t work in tech. While I have heard of several people who have either lost contracts or had hours reduced, we’re still incredibly lucky to be in an industry that's able to thrive in this challenging time.

I hope you're all staying safe, and doing OK.

Dave Verwer  




macOS Development


Business and Marketing




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And finally...

Some things never change... 🙈