The Real Top Medical iPhone Apps (Money-making edition)

By: Brian Dolan | Sep 17, 2009        

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118. Netter’s Anatomy $39.99

Netter's Anatomy iPhone app

Netter’s Anatomy, which sells for $39.99 is the next highest grossing medical app on the top 200 list: It comes in at number 118. Clearly aimed at the medical student, Netter’s app consists of colorful flashcards that help students or practicing physicians remember their anatomy. Classic.

From the company: Using outstanding anatomical illustrations from Netter’s hugely popular Atlas of Human Anatomy (4th Edition), Netter’s Anatomy allows you to carry the bestselling reference for human anatomy on your iPhone or iPod touch. Navigate through images with the flick of a finger, pinch to zoom, and tap to test your knowledge of muscles, bones, vessels, viscera and the joints. Use study mode to explore images at your own pace and quiz mode to test yourself on what you know. The concise text reviews areas of origin, insertion, action, innervation, and anatomical relevance. The notes also include clinical correlations, where appropriate. A regional organization parallels Netter’s atlas as well as most of today’s anatomy courses.

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  • Brent

    With the exception of the Anatomy app none of these are really Medical apps. They are all health and fitness apps for the individual. A medical app, in my definition, helps healthcare providers deliver care or learn how to be a healthcare provider.

  • David Doherty

    Very interesting post but I think that the App Store “revenue generation top 200″ is probably an equally uncertain way to measure the success of an application as was App Store “Popularity”.

    Some very successful apps exist outside of the top 200 grossing App list as the app providers are building free apps in order to generate traffic and brand awareness, with revenues coming from off-App store sales. A typical example of this might be the basic App’s being produced by companies such as airline operators. Many of these are simple widgets that launch URL’s designed to drive users to mobile optimised online storefronts.

    In the health area fitness chains with free applications may never appear in the top 200 grossing Apps list but the companies behind them will undoubtedly be making great revenues through increased footfall, new subscriptions and instore sales. In a similar vain the “Ocado on the Go” online home delivery shopping App (that recommends “healthy balanced meal choices”) might be generating thousands of $$$ every week for the retailer from each download but it probably won’t be featuring on any of these “top” lists anytime soon. Obviously it’s all the more successful because the marketing/distribution/data carriage costs of these marketing tool Apps are being paid for by Apple/AT&T etc.

    It’s also worth pointing out that a lot of these downloads are not related to mobile phone use as Apple have bundled the iPod Touch Downloads together so that they aren’t differentiated in these lists.

  • David Doherty

    @Brent: I disagree with your definition. Whilst there would be no grey area with your definition there definitely is in the area of pervasive participatory medicine which is preventative, health enhancing and life prolonging.

    Applications such as iFitness definitely hold the promise of enhancing an individuals medical care and may even hold more promise than irregular/brief encounters with clinicians.

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  • JL Software

    I agree that these are not medical apps. There is a separate Health category and all of these shouldn’t be allowed to list “Medical” as a category.

    The same goes for the eye charts, hearing tests, and any other “guide” for the layman. Those are self-help Health apps, not Medical apps.

    As the App Store gets bigger, more and more developers are sticking their apps in the smaller categories whether they belong there or not.

    True medical apps in Medical now only stay on page 1 for about 2 days. The “popularity” ranking is useless as it is loaded with free apps and trivial 99 cent apps which take up the first 10 pages. They might as well just reverse-rank by price.

    There’s even one “lab values” app that a guy completely stole and copied from the original, word for word. The only thing he changed was the title, and that only subtly.

  • Eileen

    For those app developers that don’t know Objective-C and Cocoa Touch and don’t want to outsource development, check out localbeacon (an iphone app builder) at Great for those who want to build just one app or developers interested in white label. Full integration of Twitter and Facebook.

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