By Kee Nethery — October 4, 2017
… order by count(languages) descending
Android sells more than iPhone in non-English speaking countries because in a world with fewer native language apps, price is the main differentiation. iPhone rules in English speaking countries because people value access to large numbers of safe apps in their native language.
For iPhone to wrestle control from Android in the non-English speaking world, the AppStore needs every app translated into every language. It’s as simple as that.
Although translated apps earn more than English-only apps, developers tell product managers that better features will increase English-only sales more than translating into other languages. Developers push hard on features vs languages because they would rather write code, which is their expertise, than manage translations.
Meanwhile, product managers don’t really have a good way to argue for more languages. How can Apple give product managers the leverage they need? Apple needs to make a tiny 5 word change to the AppStore search query.
The AppStore search brings up all the apps that match the customer’s search criteria, probably sorted by popularity. One way to get more translated apps is to alter the search results sort order to favor apps with translations. Show apps with many languages first and have the English-only apps displayed last.
This tiny five word change to the AppStore search query will give product managers leverage to add languages. As apps add languages to get better search result rankings, the AppStore will have more multi-lingual apps. People in Android countries will choose iPhone for the same reason English speaking customers choose it, access to a wide array of amazing safe apps in their native language.
Just 5 words.
Note: The map compares web traffic between iOS and Android phones. Data was obtained at https://deviceatlas.com/device-data/explorer/webusage-by-country/traffic/no-tablet/country/es/type/os_name on Sept 26, 2017.