iOS 18 could ‘sherlock’ $400M in app revenue

Apple's iOS 18 could impact $393M in third-party app revenue by adding similar features, a practice known as 'sherlocking'.

: A new report suggests that Apple's iOS 18 may affect third-party apps generating $393 million in revenue. The term 'sherlocking' describes Apple's practice of incorporating popular third-party app features into its own software. This move can diminish the revenue potential for these third-party apps, especially in categories like trail apps, grammar helpers, and password managers.

The term 'sherlocking' refers to Apple's practice of integrating features from popular third-party apps into iOS and Mac as built-in functionalities. With iOS 18, Apple may incorporate features affecting apps that have generated $393 million in revenue and have been downloaded 58 million times over the past year, according to Appfigures. This could significantly impact categories such as trail apps, grammar helpers, and password managers.

Examples of apps previously affected by 'sherlocking' include parental controls, Continuity Camera, medication tracking, and sleep tracking. These third-party apps could see a decline in revenue as users opt for built-in solutions, potentially prompting antitrust concerns due to Apple's dominant position and access to proprietary data.

Despite these challenges, some third-party apps may continue to thrive by developing features beyond Apple's offerings and utilizing new opportunities like improved Siri integration. Categories like trail apps and grammar helpers have shown significant revenue growth, suggesting that innovation could keep them competitive. However, casual users may find Apple's built-in solutions sufficient, impacting the growth potential of these third-party apps.