Why releasing an app before or during Christmas is not the best idea?


14th January 2020


3 min


Antonia Hayianni

The success of a mobile app depends on more than just the ideation and choosing a great app developer. Appropriate marketing of the app is one of the essential activities required to ensure that the app is a success. One of the misconceptions of app marketing is that it involves planning and execution of the process of promoting the app‚ which is true to a certain extent but marketing as a concept encompasses more activities than just promoting the app.

Deciding when to launch the app is also critical in ensuring that the app becomes a hit. It really does not make sense to release an app designed for or around the theme of Christmas in January‚ as it becomes quite irrelevant to users by then. Similarly‚ extreme caution needs to be observed when releasing an app just before Christmas as there are several pitfalls to avoid.

It is common for some app developers to plan their big release for Christmas‚ which has both positive and negative effects. Let us first look at some advantages of releasing an application around Christmas:

  • Christmas is one of the biggest holidays in both US and Europe‚ which means that everyone is looking to spend some money on buying stuff for the holidays.

  • Holidays are the best times for people to purchase and gift mobile devices‚ which in turn means more mobiles activated and more applications downloaded by new users in search of the best apps.

  • Apple usually gives their iTunes and App Store staff leave for about a week around the same time as Christmas and because of this the app store stays on hold‚ which means that during this time no new apps or updates are released. So any application which was submitted before the shutdown and was showcased in the New and Noteworthy section remains in that state for over a week. This is one of the reasons why developers try to launch the application around this time to ensure that their application gets the most exposure for this 2 weeks or so.

While the advantages look really good to tempt app developers to schedule a Christmas release‚ there are still major issues behind planning this release. Some of the challenges that are faced by developers are:

  • Holiday spending budgets mean big developers as well as small developers are also all vying to release their brand new applications during the same time to get maximum exposure. So‚ until and unless your application is something that can blow all competition out of the water and still stay on top‚ it is advisable to plan a release some other time.

  • A lot of these developers who already have hit applications and games in the market go on a sale during this period encouraging customers to buy from them during the holidays. Customers in general prefer to buy that awesome game or application that everyone has been talking for months‚ which has just gone on sale for the holidays. Developers take advantage of this to boost their sales right in time for the new devices being activated.

  • Apple’s iTunes and App store staff are on a holiday for the week and if not planned appropriately your application may not release at all in time and may get delayed for a whole week for its release on the App store.  You are also likely to face stiff competition to get into the new and noteworthy section of the app store‚ and a miss could result in your application going down under the pile of applications released at this time.

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