App Store Recorded 218 Billion Downloads in 2020



Charlie Marjot

Mobile adoption continued to grow in 2020, in part due to the market forces of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to App Annie’s annual “State of Mobile” industry report, mobile app downloads grew by 7% year-over-year to a record 218 billion in 2020. Meanwhile, consumer spending grew by 20% to hit a new milestone of $143 billion, led by markets that included China, the United States, Japan, South Korea, and the United Kingdom.

The adoption of mobile has been growing unprecedently, and 2020 is not an exception. Fortunately, this all happen despite the Covid-19 situation. According to the report presented by App Annie’s annual “State of Mobile”, the downloads of mobile apps grew by a record of 7 % to a new high of 218 billion in 2020.

Talking in terms of capital spent by the customers to buy these apps. They have spent around 3.5 trillion minutes using apps on Android devices alone.

In another development, app usage in the U.S is high then the time spent watching live TV.

Currently, the average American watches 3.7 hours of live TV per day, but now, it has been increased to 4 hours per day on the mobile device.

average hours spent on mobile per day per user

The increase in time is not confined to the U.S, it is widely spread, irrespective of the nations or the region. This widespread effect can be witnessed in Indonesia, Brazil, India, China, South Korea, Germany, France, and others.

Likewise, the same effect can be traced to all the demographics. For instance, Gen Z, millennials, and Gen X/Baby Boomers spent 16%, 18%, and 30% more time in their most-used apps year-over-year, respectively. However, what those favorite apps looked like was very different.

In terms of Gen Z in the U.S, the most marketable app on Android phones included Snapchat, Twitch, Tiktok, Roblox, and Spotify. While the Millenials favored Discord, Linkedin, Paypal, and Amazon Music.

year-over-year growth in total time spent in top 50 apps per user by demographic

Talking about the ill effects of Covid-19, it has changed the businesses have been functioning. But fortunately, digital business, especially App Development Domain. The pandemic didn’t change how consumers were using apps in 2020 but accelerated it instead.

By witnessing this unprecedented growth in the domain, investors around the world are eager to invest in taking this to another level. For now, $73 capital has already poured into the mobile app companies. According to the data presented by Crunchbase, 26% of total global funding dollars in 2020 went to businesses that included a mobile solution.

a decade in funding to mobile tech funding includes seed, venture and private equity for venture-backed companies

Taking the year 2016 to 2020 into consideration, global funding to mobile technology companies is more than doubled when compared with the previous five years and was formerly led by financial services, transportation, commerce, and shopping.

Mobile gaming adoption is also at an all-time high in 2020. Casual games have dominated the trend and accounted for almost 78% in terms of downloads. Core games accounted for 66% of games’ consumer spend and 55% of the time spent.

When people were stuck or quarantined during the pandemic, mobile games were the best respite for them.

global mobile gaming breakdown 2020

Time spent in Finance has recorded up to 45% worldwide, and the participation in the stock market grew up to 45 % worldwide through mobile apps. And obviously, TikTok had a great year too.

Despite facing bans in multiple nations, TikTok registered an incredible 325% year-over-year growth and ranked among the top 5 apps by time spent criteria.

average monthly time spent per user among top social networking apps by hours spent in 2020

Mobile commerce has also registered the same growth graph it has been showing throughout the years. While in the almost same category, Social shopping also performed decently in terms of global downloads of Pinterest and Instagram, growing 50% and 20% year-over-year, respectively.

The pandemic also paved the way for the increased usage of mobile ordering apps. Mentioning this growth in terms of nations, the U.S, Argentina, the U.K, Indonesia, and Russia, the app grew by 60%, 65%, 70%, 80%, and 105%, respectively, in Q4.

And when most of the digital businesses run in WFH (Work From Home) model, business apps like Zoom and Google Meet, and others grew at 275% in Q4.

So basically, digital businesses have shown some decent growth during this pandemic while businesses remain stagnant or got down to their least growth area.

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