By Setareh Behroozi

Android market in Iran, a promising future

July 26, 2019 - 11:2

According to a report released by the Information and Communication Technology Ministry, the active mobile phone penetration rate has reached 110.53% until March 2018 in Iran.

The figure promises a great market for cell phone-related businesses in the country, which is somehow untapped in some sections.

Café Bazaar, an Iranian Android marketplace, is one of the few Iranian companies that release comprehensive reports on Iran’s android application market. The reports provide a deep view of the Iranian market, which can be used by developers and business persons.

This article presents an analysis released by TechRasa, an Iranian startup, and tech media, based on the latest report of Café Bazaar in late June 2019.

Considering the figures and statistics mentioned below, Café Bazaar can develop its market not only in the country but also in other Persian-language and neighboring Arab countries.

There are 110 million Persian-language population worldwide, which provides a great market in Iran and friendly and neighboring countries can create Halal content for their android market

There are 110 million Persian-language population worldwide, which provides a great market in Iran. Moreover, friendly and neighboring countries like Afghanistan (with 6.5 million internet users) and Arab countries like Qatar, Oman, Lebanon, Iraq and Syria (with a total 38.5 million users) can create Halal content for their android market.

Café Bazaar has over 40 million active installs, 31 million monthly active users and 163,000 applications (31,000 games and 132,000 applications) in comparison with the Google Play, which has over 2.5 trillion monthly active users and 2.6 million applications.

However one can compare the ratio of the number of applications and the users. In Google Play, there are 962 active users for each application but there are 190 active users for each application on Café Bazaar. However the issue can be considered from two points of view; first, the global market of the Google Play cannot be undermined.

The second approach assesses the number of applications for each user, which is higher (about 5 times) in Café Bazaar.

Although there is not any precise statistics about the quality and proficiency of the applications, the Iranian applications are not developed as of the Google Play which can be considered as an opportunity for android market of Iran.

Double productivity for Iranian android developers

During the Iranian calendar year 1396 (March 2017-March 2018), the number of applications available on Café Bazaar was 151,000 which increased to 163,000 in the Iranian calendar year 1397 (March 2018-March 2019).

The Google Play has 724,000 developer teams, which has released at least one applications. According to the statistics in 2017, each team at the Google Play develop 3.6 applications, while the figure for Café Bazaar is 7.4 applications for each developer. The issue shows the double productivity of Iranian developers, which may affect their quality and services.

Market development in Iran

According to the statistics, there are 65 million smartphones in Iran, seven million of which are iPhone and 64 million users are connected to 3G and 4G networks.

Hence, Café Bazaar can develop more in Iran. About four million users are annually added to Café Bazaar each year, which is not very high growth. However as mentioned above, Café Bazaar can expand its market in other countries.

Fewer applications on smartphones in Iran

Globally, the number of applications installed on the smartphones by the users are 80 ones while in Iran the number is 62. In addition, the users use 40 application per month and the figure is not announced by Café Bazaar.

Transactions, which include buying applications, subscription right, and in-app purchasing, grew during the Iranian calendar year 1397 at a lower rate. The annual growth of transactions was 3.5 million during 1395 (March 2016-March 2017), two million during 1396 (March 2017-March 2018) and 500,000 during 1397 (March 2018-March 2019).

However one cannot neglect the hard economic situation of the country during the past year.

Tehran, the hub of android developers

From 22,000 developer teams, 28 percent of them live in Tehran, holding 71.6 percent share of Café Bazaar income, which equals 1,850 billion rials (about 44 million dollars). While Tehrani developers hold 26.8 percent share of 163,000 applications of Café Bazaar.

During the Iranian calendar year 1397, there were over 1600 application developers and 370 game developers that their products have more than 10,000 active installs.

A promising trans-border market

Café Bazaar announced that it has 520,000 internet users in foreign countries and has a great capacity for attracting more, which can bring forex to Iran by selling applications and games.

The empowering of the digital economy and supporting digital marketing can bring great revenues for Iran, a fact that should not be disregarded.


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