Apple Inc CEO Tim Cook discusses the App Store during an Apple media event in San Francisco, California, U.S. September 7, 2016.
Photograph by Beck Diefenbach — Reuters
By Don Reisinger
January 5, 2017

Apple’s App Store had a successful 2016—and a big boost in revenue compared to 2015, the company revealed on Thursday.

The digital marketplace generated $20 billion in collective revenue for all of its developers in 2016, up 40% compared to 2015, Apple (AAPL) announced on Thursday. While the company didn’t say how much revenue it had generated from the App Store, Apple did say that it has paid out more than $60 billion to developers since the App Store’s opening in 2008. A third of that was generated in 2016 alone.

The holiday season proved important to the App Store’s record-breaking success. According to Apple, consumers made $3 billion in purchases from the App Store in December.

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Apple’s App Store hosts more than 2.2 million free and paid apps that can run on the iPhone, iPad, and the company’s other devices. When developers offer their apps through the marketplace, they can choose to sell them or make them available for free. Apple generally takes 30% of revenue generated on free apps, leaving the remaining 70% to developers. In-app purchases offered through both free-to-download and paid apps also carry the same revenue-sharing agreement. In some cases, Apple has different deals in place with major developers and those who offer subscriptions to their programs. So Apple might make less than 30% on some apps.

Apple says its marketplace is growing rapidly, and the number of apps it’s offering was up 20% year over year in 2016. The company also touted its app subscription billings, which were up 74% year over year to $2.7 billion last year.

The announcement comes just a few months after Apple reported fast growth in its Services business, which includes the App Store, as well as its Apple Music streaming service, among other apps. In the company’s fiscal fourth quarter ended Sept. 24, Apple’s Services business grew 24% year over year to $6.3 billion in quarterly revenue. Apple has said that it believes its Services business will continue to grow rapidly in the coming year.

For more about Apple’s App Store, watch:

Already, the App Store appears to be playing its part in contributing to a growing Services business in 2017. According to Apple, New Year’s Day was the App Store’s busiest day ever with nearly $240 million in app purchases.

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