I think it's important for new developers to realize that the market has taken a dramatic swing from what it was even a year ago. The volume of daily new apps has made it nearly impossible to cut through the pack without other investments in marketing.
My app based income has been cut by about 90% of what it was last time this year. Though I am still able to bring in enough income from apps to support a family of three, that will not be the case within a few months. My successes have been built on volume of apps, not any big sellers. It's trickle income, and it worked for the most part.
It's the news that nobody wants to hear, especially on a site dedicated to making games and apps an easy reality. I'd be surprised if Corona wasn't aware of this as well, hence the new pricing models.
The app market has become very similar to the music business. Pretty much anyone inclined can create music with an iPad at this point, but only a tiny minority will make it to the top. And rarely, if ever, without a publisher. There is actually quite a bit of difference between an "independent" musician and "hobbyist," though they may use the same creative tools. The app developer seems to be facing a similar crisis.
Even the big players are not immune. For example the games Amazing Alex and Pudding Monsters are the follow-ups to Angry Birds and Cut The Rope. Neither one of those follow-up games has been able to get anywhere near the traction of the first games, and it isn't for lack of capital.
So what does that mean for us who love developing, and find vast creative energy in the building of apps?
To me it means we will need to reach out more and start team building so we can mitigate the cost of time. It means we do it for the love of it first, and the money second. It means that we consider support roles in the industry. If we can't be the big game maker, then at least try to help others do so. Sell templates, start building apps for hire, etc.
I'm generally an optimistic person, but the last 3 apps I released have brought in basically nothing. It's the first time that has happened, and my optimism faded a bit. It reminded me of the quote; "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting it to come out different." I was doing what I did before, but it wasn't working anymore. Time to step back and reevaluate.
Anyway, I'm still extremely optimistic because there is a huge industry around game and app development that will continue to expand, so opportunity is out there, but I might not be the next Lady Gaga of apps. Which is probably for the best at the end of the day.