Google Play's revenues soared by 200% in the fourth quarter from a year ago compared with a 20% gain for Apple's application store, according to App Annie, an analytics firm. Apple still holds more than a fourfold sales edge over Google's app market, but that margin is likely to shrink quickly, an analyst said. "Clearly, the Google Play platform is working, and monetization is increasing. The growth is much more than organic ... it's really meteoric, especially in Japan and Korea," said App Annie's marketing vice president, Ollie Lo.

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