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iTunes Economy does $12 Billion Annual Business, As Seen in Asymco Report

We weren’t requiring any confirmation that iTunes is a heck of a cash cow for Apple, but we just got it thanks to a report from Horace Dediu of Asymco. Dediu apparently did some data gathering and then took it upon himself to spread the word that through the iTunes economy alone, Apple does about $12 billion annual business—which, if it’s anywhere near accurate, is mind-blowing.

asymcologotuawThe $12 billion figure speaks well enough for itself, but the growth of iTunes is even more incredible when you consider that apps sold in the App Store now account for about one third ($4 billion) of year revenue. The iTunes bread and butter of years past (music, books, movies, TV) is shown to be growing at a rate that’s half of what apps are doing… The Asymco report also indicates that—over the last 5 years—Apple has spent about $10 billion to create $24 billion worth of sales for content owners.

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The full report goes into even greater detail, but suffice it to say that at $3.5 billion yearly operation costs, iTunes is a pretty healthy machine… And with apps to thank for 1/3 of all iTunes revenue, it will be interesting to see the direction the App Store takes relative to Apple’s other media interest in the coming years.

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