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'Redacted' Hits Number 8 Spot in Mac App Store With Just $302 in First-Day Profit

App developer Sam Soffes today published a blog post detailing the early monetary performance of his new app Redacted [Direct Link], which allows users to easily obscure sensitive information on personal photos.

redacted app
Screenshot of Redacted's image obscuring features

After launching the app earlier this week, the $4.99 Redacted app quickly broke into the top paid app lists on the U.S. Mac App Store. Specifically, by the end of its launch day on May 5, Redacted was eighth in overall paid apps and first in top paid graphics apps. After some friends began questioning him about his expected profit, Soffes realized he hadn't really even begun to think about the possible profit the photo-obscuring app would rake in for him.

Yesterday, Soffes tweeted out a question, asking his followers to guess how much profit the app received in its first day on the market. While the guesses averaged $12,460.67, Soffes revealed his app had achieved just 87 paid downloads, earning him a mere $302 worldwide for the eighth top paid app in the U.S. Mac App Store.

redacted profit
There were 37 guesses. I threw out the lowest and highest guesses which were both hilarious. The average guess was $12,460.67. 7 of those units were promo codes I sent out. Only 59 of those units were in the US. It's pretty nuts that 59 sales is top paid on the Mac App Store in the US.
In response to Soffes' blog post, Dan Counsell, a developer of popular organizational app Clear, shared a few numbers on the app's profits over a single day. Counsell tweeted that Clear earned $453 the day before the tweet, noting the list app is third in productivity and fifteenth overall in the top paid app list for the United States.

The top paid ranking is a measure of download volume (with some tweaks to account for sales momentum), not profits, so developers of higher-priced Mac App Store apps are in some cases certainly doing better than Redacted. Even so, with a drop in sales following the launch surge, Redacted is currently the #81 top grossing app in the U.S. Mac App Store while sitting at the #19 spot in paid apps.

Towards the end of his blog post, Soffes mentions that he nearly decided to continue working on another indie app, Whiskey, in an attempt to make a living off of that app. "I'm glad I didn't," he states honestly. He now is employed at mobile payments solution Venmo as of early this week.



Top Rated Comments

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14 months ago
$4.99 seems pretty steep for something you can do for free on Skitch and isn't something most people often need to use. If he can bring in $100-200 a day for a year he can comfortably live off of that. I'll bet he makes more than $302 thanks to this MacRumors story alone.
Rating: 32 Votes
14 months ago

If he can bring in $100-200 a day for a year he can comfortably live off of that.


I see you have vast experience operating a small business. :rolleyes:
Rating: 30 Votes
14 months ago

An annualized revenue of $110k for a $5 app that does nothing but let you draw black rectangles (or blurs, or pixelate) parts of an image? That sounds remarkably good to me...

Even with sales falling off, it sounds like he did pretty well for an afternoon's work.


If you think that the sustained rate of a app's first week sales continue for the other 51 weeks in a year then you really need to brush up on your app research.
Rating: 29 Votes
14 months ago

First Day Profit



Wouldn't revenue be the right word here ?
Rating: 26 Votes
14 months ago
An annualized revenue of $110k for a $5 app that does nothing but let you draw black rectangles (or blurs, or pixelate) parts of an image? That sounds remarkably good to me...

Even with sales falling off, it sounds like he did pretty well for an afternoon's work.
Rating: 25 Votes
14 months ago

An annualized revenue of $110k for a $5 app that does nothing but let you draw black rectangles (or blurs, or pixelate) parts of an image? That sounds remarkably good to me...

Even with sales falling off, it sounds like he did pretty well for an afternoon's work.


This is all assuming they maintain sales like that for an entire year, which they likely won't.
Rating: 24 Votes
14 months ago

Big surprise. Nobody wants to pay for anything. Nothing new to see here.


You missed the whole point of the article then. The point is how easy it was to get into the top paid apps list, with so little money being made: "Redacted was eighth in overall paid apps and first in top paid graphics apps"
Rating: 20 Votes
14 months ago
Big surprise. Nobody wants to pay for anything. Nothing new to see here.
Rating: 16 Votes
14 months ago
I suspect some people are going to be confused into thinking this article is talking about phone/iPad apps.

Are you kidding me? $36500 a year? That's $3000 a month, before taxes. My rent is almost that much for a tiny 1-bedroom. And if you have a small business, you have to buy your own health insurance, at a much elevated cost.


You live in one of the most expensive cities on the planet. Not exactly a reasonable comparison for most people.
Rating: 16 Votes
14 months ago
I haven't even bothered with Mac this generation - there's hardly any point putting time into it. The money is in throwaway 99c iOS apps.
Rating: 15 Votes

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