Tampere University of Technology

TUTCRIS Research Portal

Letters from the War of Ecosystems: An Analysis of Independent Software Vendors in Mobile Application Marketplaces

Research output: Book/ReportDoctoral thesisCollection of Articles

Details

Original languageEnglish
PublisherTURKU CENTRE FOR COMPUTER SCIENCE
Volume188
ISBN (Print)978-952-12-3144-5
Publication statusPublished - 19 Dec 2014
Externally publishedYes
Publication typeG5 Doctoral dissertation (article)

Abstract

The recent emergence of a new generation of mobile application marketplaces has changed the business in the mobile ecosystems. The marketplaces have gathered over a million applications by hundreds of thousands of application developers and publishers. Thus, software ecosystems—consisting of developers, consumers and the orchestrator—have emerged as a part of the mobile ecosystem.

This dissertation addresses the new challenges faced by mobile application developers in the new ecosystems through empirical methods. By using the theories of two-sided markets and business ecosystems as the basis, the thesis assesses monetization and value creation in the market as well as the impact of electronic Word-of-Mouth (eWOM) and developer multihoming— i. e. contributing for more than one platform—in the ecosystems. The data for the study was collected with web crawling from the three biggest marketplaces: Apple App Store, Google Play and Windows Phone Store.

The dissertation consists of six individual articles. The results of the studies show a gap in monetization among the studied applications, while a majority of applications are produced by small or micro-enterprises. The study finds only weak support for the impact of eWOM on the sales of an application in the studied ecosystem. Finally, the study reveals a clear difference in the multi-homing rates between the top application developers and the rest. This has, as discussed in the thesis, an impact on the future market analyses—it seems that the smart device market can sustain several parallel application marketplaces.