Apple today announced record breaking sales for the App Store through the 2015 and 2016 holiday season. Customers spent $1.1 billion on apps and in-app purchases worldwide from December 21 to January 3rd, "setting back-to-back weekly records for traffic and purchases," according to the press release. The App Store recorded its biggest single-day in sales on Christmas Day before breaking the record one week later on January 1, 2016 with $144 million in downloads.
“The App Store had a holiday season for the record books. We are excited that our customers downloaded and enjoyed so many incredible apps for iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple Watch and Apple TV, spending over $20 billion on the App Store last year alone,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “We're grateful to all the developers who have created the most innovative and exciting apps in the world for our customers. We can't wait for what's to come in 2016.”
It is safe to assume that the addition of two new App Store options helped Apple reach its record breaking sales throughout the holidays. Apple launched the Apple Watch in early 2015, and Apple TV 4 owners were able to download third-party apps for the first time since the device was launched in 2007. It is unknown what specific App Stores had the most sales since Apple did not provide a breakdown of individual device downloads. Apple did note that "Gaming, Social Networking and Entertainment" categories dominated the App Store this year, and games and subscription apps were some of the highest grossing apps in 2015.
The App Store has also "brought in nearly $40 billion for developers since 2008, with over one-third generated in the last year alone," according to Apple. This has created an estimated 1.4 million jobs in the U.S. alone and 1.2 million jobs in Europe and 1.4 million jobs in China.