Be the first to like this
App developers are constantly competing against each other to win more downloads for their apps. With hundreds of thousands of apps in these online stores, what strategy should a developer use to be successful? Should they innovate, make many similar apps, optimise their own apps or just copy the apps of others? Looking more deeply, how does a complex app ecosystem perform when developers choose to use different strategies? We investigate these questions using AppEco, the first Artificial Life model of mobile application ecosystems. In AppEco, developer agents build and upload apps to the app store; user agents browse the store and download the apps. A distinguishing feature of AppEco is the explicit modelling of apps as artefacts. In this work we use AppEco to simulate Apple’s iOS app ecosystem and investigate common developer strategies, evaluating them in terms of downloads received, app diversity, and adoption rate.