The App Economy Is Now ‘Bigger Than Hollywood’ / The Atlantic

The web might be the most important medium in American culture.
Lucy Nicholson/Reuters

What is the major cultural force in America right now? It might just be apps and the web.

While reading a self-laudatory Apple press release, the technology business analyst Horace Deidu found something remarkable: The iOS App Store distributed $10 billion to developers in 2014, which, Deidu points out, is just about as much as Hollywood earned off U.S. box office revenues the same year.


From a sheer personnel standpoint, then, the App economy is almost certainly bigger than Hollywood. And as Deidu writes, it’s also “easier to enter,” “has wider reach,” and “is growing more rapidly.”

The iOS App Store Versus Hollywood U.S. Box Office

Horace Deidu

To me, that the American app industry may eclipse the American film industry is more interesting for what it means culturally. There’s a growing sense that the products of the sector we usually call “tech” are attaining cultural primacy—the web is the new TV.

What does this feel like? For me, it’s seeing ads for “Clash of Clans” during the Super Bowl, or the thing where cable news talks more about Twitter and Facebook than their users talk about it. It’s where BuzzFeed feels more culturally ubiquitous than MTV. It’s where Nickelodeon introduces a nightly primetime show that literally includes, as a major feature, the viewer watching child stars watching YouTube videos. It’s Grumpy Cat’s Worst Christmas Ever. It’s YouTube stars interviewing the President.

Perhaps this iteration of web-iness-as-culture is only a fad, a symptom of a wider tech bubble. (It’s hard to remember where the MSN in MSNBC first came from.) But as the web slowly weaves its way throughout American culture, we’re going to see stats like this more often.

+ artículo publicado en The Atlantic



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