It started after I have been contacted by Apple Intellectual Property Department following an infringement notice of the trademark owner of "Name That Tune". Even though the infringement may not be clear and the company does not own the "Name That Song" expression and does not distribute any IPhone application, I decided to change the name of my application to avoid legal action, possibly a long and expensive procedure for a freelance developer.
"Name That Song" was being downloaded quite well for the free version (mainly in the US), with more than 700'000 downloads and around 2'000 downloads/day. The paid version figures were around 100 times less ( around 9'000 total). This gives also interesting information on downloads comparison for Lite/Full version.
Now, the bad surprise for me was the drop of sales after the new version "WhoSingIt Game" was on the App Store. It was released as an update with only the App Name changed. Thus, positions in charts were not changed when the new App Name was released and no change in the game were made, the drop of sales can only be explained by the change in name.
Here are some graphics on downloads and sales statistics:
"Name That Song" LITE VERSION - January 2001/May 2011
As you can see the drop is clearly visible at the end of march. Downloads were cut by more than a factor 10! It can also be noticed that around Christmas/New Year Eve, downloads are boosted for a few weeks.
For the paid version, the drop is less obvious but sales were divided by more than 2.
"Name That Song" FULL VERSION - January 2011/May 2011
Finally as a bonus, statistics of advertising revenue drop for "Name That Song" LITE - March-April 2011
To conclude with, one may not underestimate the importance of picking a great name for his application in order to achieve good results on the App Store. This may be true also for localized names in other store than US AppStore which may be sensitive to different names.
A contest is also open to submit a new name App Name Contest - 50$ Price
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Stéphane Lecorney
IPhone/IPad developer of "Name That Song"/"WhoSingIt Game"