Ever since mobile devices like smartphones and tablets have been around, they’ve invaded consumers’ daily lives.
Today, not only is the number of mobile device users increasing but so is the amount of time spent on them and more specifically, on apps.
That translates to more opportunities to reach and interact with consumers, which businesses are taking full advantage of.
And as companies rush to tap into this lucrative market, mobile app developers are becoming increasingly in demand.
Whether you’re a business owner looking to create an app for your business or want to become an app developer, now’s a great time to do so.
But before you do, it’s important to understand the basics of apps and app downloads.
In this article, we discuss ten app download statistics and facts you need to know in 2020. This includes the most popular apps, as well as the number of apps in app stores like Google Play and the Apple App Store.
In This Article
- 1 10 App Download Statistics in 2020
- 1.1 1. The Average Smartphone User Has 60 To 90 Apps on Their Phone
- 1.2 2. There Are Over 20 Million Registered iOS Developers
- 1.3 3. In-App Messaging Increases Retention by More Than 3x
- 1.4 4. 71 Percent of App Users Churn Within Three Months
- 1.5 5. App Downloads in 2022 Are Expected To Hit 258.2 Billion
- 1.6 6. There Are Over Five Million Mobile Apps Today
- 1.7 7. 90 Percent of Time Spent on Mobile Is Within Apps
- 1.8 8. App Downloads Increased by 45 Percent in Four Years
- 1.9 9. There Are 1.85 Million Apps Available on Apple’s App Store
- 1.10 10. There Are 2.56 Million Apps on the Google Play Store
- 2 FAQ’s on App Downloads
- 3 App Download Statistics Summary
- 4 Want to Learn More?
10 App Download Statistics in 2020
1. The Average Smartphone User Has 60 To 90 Apps on Their Phone
There’s no denying that mobile apps have become a huge part of our lives.This first statistic will prove just that and shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. From messaging apps, to productivity and gaming apps, there are hundreds of apps for anyone with a smartphone.
The average smartphone user accesses only around 25 apps in a given month. This represents between 28 and 42 percent of the number of apps they have installed. In addition, 96 percent of their time is spent using just ten of those apps (40 percent).
The rest of the apps? They’re most likely only used once in a while.
2. There Are Over 20 Million Registered iOS Developers
Given the popularity of mobile apps and the demand for them, there needs to be enough developers on the market to cater to the growing needs of mobile app users.
The Apple App Store alone sees up to half a billion weekly visitors and there are as many as 20 million registered iOS developers creating the apps for them (HubSpot, 2019).
These iOS developers have been instrumental in Apple’s performance. Together, they’ve helped the Apple App Store generate $100 billion in revenue.
Reports also say that the majority of these have come through gaming apps. In fact, mobile games are responsible for an estimated 75 percent of consumer expenditure on the iOS. So even though the $100 billion revenue was a collective effort of the 20 million iOS developers, the big majority is likely to have come from the larger mobile game development firms like Supercell, King, and MZ.
3. In-App Messaging Increases Retention by More Than 3x
Whether you’re interested in becoming a mobile app developer to earn some side income or want to launch an app for your business, you’ll need to know all the tricks in the book to keep user retention rates high.
This includes installing features within the app itself to keep users from exiting, and encourage them to return.
One of the most effective ways to do that is with the use of in-app messages. These are mobile messages and notifications that app users receive when they are using the app.
In-app messages are considered to be crucial for customer engagement and the latest app download statistics show that they can increase retention rates by more than three times (Localytics, 2018).
When implementing in-app messages, consider catering your messages to the individual user. Survey results show that personalized in-app messages tend to perform better than generic ones.
4. 71 Percent of App Users Churn Within Three Months
When it comes to retaining users, one of the most important metrics app developers look at is the churn rate. This refers to the rate at which users are uninstalling the app.
Churn rates are crucial to understanding how popular an app is and how viable it is. In general, the lower the churn rate, the better for your app because a high churn rate would mean a lower number of active users and possibly lower revenue for your app.
As it stands, it’s estimated that 57 percent of app users churn after one month. This figure rises to 67 percent in the second month and 71 percent in the third month (Web Engage, 2020). In other words, more than seven out of ten mobile app users deleted an app within three months of downloading it.
These figures are representative of mobile apps across all industries. If you’re looking for a benchmark churn rate benchmark for an app you’re developing, it will depend on what type of app it is (i.e. what category it’s in).
5. App Downloads in 2022 Are Expected To Hit 258.2 Billion
With the growing usage of smartphones and apps, the increase in the number of app downloads year over year is showing no signs of stopping.
In fact, the total number of app downloads is forecast to hit as much as 258.2 billion in 2022 (App Annie, 2019). Experts say this is spurred on by the growing number of smartphone installed base (the number of smartphones that are in use), which is set to increase 56.4 percent from 3.9 billion in 2017 to 6.1 billion in 2020.
Along with it, the average amount of money consumers spend on apps will also grow to $26 per device – a 23 percent increase from 2017.
That’s not all. The growing app economy also means more opportunities for developers to get their apps in front of eyes and more revenue. And revenue potential is certainly there; app users’ total expenditure on in-app stores is expected to nearly double to an astounding $157 billion in 2022.
6. There Are Over Five Million Mobile Apps Today
With the selection of mobile apps there are today, users today are spoilt for choice. Regardless of what device they’re using and what app stores they have access to, they’re likely to be able to find apps of all sorts.
As of the first quarter of 2020, there are a whopping 5.565 million apps available across the four most popular mobile app stores: Google Play, Apple App Store, Windows Store, and Amazon Appstore (Statista, 2020).
Though the majority of the apps are on the two leading app stores, Google Play and Apple App Store, the other two, Windows Store and Amazon Appstore, hold quite an impressive mobile app inventory themselves.
There are 669,000 apps on the Windows Store and 489,000 apps on the Amazon Appstore. Together, they make up more than 20 percent of the total number of apps on these four leading mobile app stores.
7. 90 Percent of Time Spent on Mobile Is Within Apps
The above app download statistics provide clear evidence of the rise of mobile apps and their popularity among smartphone users.
And that’s in line with the increasing amount of time spent with mobile devices, which, for the first time in 2019, exceeded that of televisions.
In 2019, the average smartphone user in the US spent three hours and 10 mins every day on the device. But how much time are mobile users actually spending on their apps? As it turns out, a pretty significant amount.
As many as 90 percent of the time spent on smartphones is dedicated to using apps (Kommando, 2020). In other words, smartphone users in the US spend two hours and 51 minutes every day with mobile apps.
These are wonderful figures for app developers as it shows an increasing demand for apps. Clearly, there’s a market to be tapped here. If you’re thinking about creating an app and tapping into this market, we recommend giving our article on How to Create an App a read.
8. App Downloads Increased by 45 Percent in Four Years
There’s no dispute about the increasing popularity and use of mobile apps by consumers.
In 2016, there were a total of 140.68 billion app downloads by consumers worldwide. Fast forward two years and in 2018 that number skyrocketed to 192.45 billion – a 36.8 percent increase.
In 2019, the number of app downloads hit a record high of 204 billion, marking an impressive 45 percent increase in a four-year period (Statista, 2019). This translates to more than half a million apps being downloaded every single day on average in 2019.
The rise in app downloads is in line with the growing number of smartphone users around the world. In 2016, there were 2.5 billion people using smartphones. This figure hit 3.2 billion in 2019, a 28 percent increase, and is expected to continue rising to 3.5 billion in 2020 and 3.8 billion in 2021.
9. There Are 1.85 Million Apps Available on Apple’s App Store
As the second biggest mobile app store, the options that are available on Apple’s app store is wide-ranging.
The latest app download statistics show that as of the beginning of this year, there were as many as 1.847 million apps available for download on the Apple App Store (Statista, 2020). That represents one third (33.2 percent) of the total number of mobile apps available across the four biggest mobile app stores, which also include Google, Windows, and Amazon.
Given the popularity of social media among mobile app users, it should come as no surprise that social media apps are the most popular apps on the Apple App Store.
According to Apple App Store’s official data, six of the top free iOS app store downloads in 2019 were social media apps – mainly YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat, TikTok, Facebook Messenger, and Facebook. The remaining four are Gmail, Netflix, Google Maps, and Amazon Shopping.
10. There Are 2.56 Million Apps on the Google Play Store
By and far, the king of all app stores is the Google Play Store, home to 2.56 million apps (Statista, 2020).
That makes it the biggest app store and by quite a margin, too – 38 percent more than its closest rival, the Apple App Store.
To provide you with a better idea of Google Play Store’s dominance, here’s another perspective: Of the 5.565 million apps available across the four leading app stores, nearly half (46 percent) are hosted by Google Play.
The large number of apps available on Google Play Store is not surprising, considering the massive number of consumers it caters to.
Google Play comes pre-installed in most phones running on the Android operating system, which is the leading mobile operating system globally. As a matter of fact, more than three out of four smartphones worldwide currently run on Android.
FAQ’s on App Downloads
What Are the Top 10 Most Downloaded Apps of All Time?
Given the proliferation of social media over the past decade and its widespread use today, it is no wonder they currently dominate the list of the most downloaded apps of all time.
Facebook currently tops the list, with the total number of Facebook app downloads hitting an impressive 4.6 billion. As we’ll see from this list, Facebook’s reputation as the king of social media is certainly not for naught. Nearly half of the apps on the list are owned by them.
Here are the ten most downloaded apps of the past decade and their download figures:
- Facebook: 4.6 billion
- Facebook Messenger: 4.4 billion
- WhatsApp: 4.3 billion
- Instagram: 2.7 billion
- Snapchat: 1.5 billion
- Skype: 1.3 billion
- TikTok: 1.3 billion
- UC Browser: 1.3 billion
- YouTube: 1.3 billion
- Twitter: 1 billion
How Can I Find App Download Statistics for a Specific App?
There are plenty of platforms on the internet that collate app download statistics. These websites are extremely useful for anyone looking for the most popular apps and their download figures.
Here are some from which you can find comprehensive data on app downloads.
Appfigures is an app analytics platform that provides data on the top 1,000 apps and is updated every hour. The iOS and Google Play Store aside, users can also view rankings of apps on Amazon, Mac, Apple TV, and iMessage.
It is one of the most informative websites for app download statistics as search results can be filtered by country, type of device, and even app category. However, a premium account is required in order to access app download statistics.
For the most part, Apptrace is similar to Appfigures. It lists the top 300 apps on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store and also categorizes them by app category.
On top of country breakdowns, it also provides global rankings and even has a list of top 300 mobile app developers. You can also view daily app rankings on specific dates going back all the way to May 2012.
Sensor Tower is another app intelligence platform that provides analytical data on mobile apps on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. It also features an in-app purchase filter to view a list of the top-performing apps that offer in-app purchases.
With Sensor Tower, app download statistics can be accessed with a free account, which also gives you access to daily app rankings on specific dates going back 90 days.
What Are the Most Popular Mobile Games Globally?
According to App Annie, mobile game Subway Surfers is the most popular game worldwide and the most downloaded mobile app game of the past decade. The game, created by Denmark-based Kiloo and SYBO Games, is particularly popular in India, which accounts for more than 15 percent of its total downloads.
Here’s the list of the most downloaded apps in the gaming category globally:
- Subway Surfers
- Candy Crush Saga
- Temple Run 2
- My Talking Tom
- Clash of Clans
- Hill Climb Racing
- Minion Rush
- Fruit Ninja
- 8 Ball Pool
What Are the Most Popular Mobile Games in the US?
The most popular mobile games in the US consist of games of all categories – from puzzles and fighting games to sports and strategy.
Here are the most popular apps in the gaming category in the US:
- PUBG Mobile
- Call of Duty®: Mobile – Garena
- Clash of Clans
- Free Fire
- Clash Royale
- Brawl Stars
- Pokémon Go
- Ark: Survival Evolved
App Download Statistics Summary
These app download statistics and facts should provide you with the lowdown on mobile apps.
We’ve gone through everything from the most downloaded apps to the number of apps available in app stores like Google Play, Apple App Store, and more.
If you’re looking to create an app, we hope this article has equipped you with the information you need to go forth.