Smartphone and tablet apps are expected to double by 2017, according to a new Juniper Research forecast.
According to the figures, total app downloads across all platforms, including iOS and Android, will come in at around 80 million during 2013.
This figure is likely to double to 160 million by 2017.
However, most of the growth will come in free app downloads, with the percentage of paid app downloads set to fall from 6.1% in 2013 to just 5% in 2017.
The report also anticipates carrier billing by mobile network operators (MNOs) becoming increasingly common.
“Carrier billing has become an increasingly viable option for MNOs who want to see a share of app store revenues, and also for app stores who want to distribute their content to unbanked consumers,” says report author Sian Rowlands.
“However, MNOs must realise they won’t see as great a revenue share as they did during the pre-app store era”.