Global mobile app revenue growth stagnates in Q1 2022: report

Global mobile app adoption and consumer spending on in-app purchases, premium apps, and subscriptions on the App Store and Google Play were relatively flat year-over-year in the first quarter of 2022, according to data. data from Sensor Tower Store Intelligence.

Global consumer spending on in-app purchases, premium apps, and mobile app and game subscriptions was $32.5 billion, up 0.6% from $32.3 billion in the first quarter of 2021. Consumer spending remained nearly flat year-on-year.

Apple’s marketplace generated more than double Google Play’s revenue, growing 5.8% year-over-year to $21.8 billion, from $20.6 billion recorded in the same period last year. Google Play recorded approximately $10.7 billion in consumer spending, down 8.5% year-on-year from $11.7 billion in the first quarter of 2021.

The top-grossing offline app was TikTok, including Douyin on iOS in China, maintaining its position. It also tops the charts on the App Store. The app generated $821 million in consumer spending this quarter across both stores. On Google Play, it was second to Google One, which topped the chart with nearly $250 million.

In terms of downloads, first downloads on the App Store and Google Play grew 1.1% year-over-year in the first quarter of 2022, reaching 36.8 billion downloads. Both platforms saw roughly the same growth, with Apple’s market growing 1.2% YoY to 8.5 billion downloads and Google’s Store growing 1.1% YoY annual to reach 28.3 billion.

TikTok saw the most downloads in both markets combined as well as Apple’s market, while Meta maintained its lead over Google Play.

In 2021, Facebook was the most downloaded app on Google Play. In the last quarter, that spot went to Meta’s Instagram, which had 125.8 million first installs. On the App Store and Google Play, TikTok has had over 186 million installs worldwide.

Overall app usage

In terms of app usage, the average number of monthly active users across top apps increased 4.8% year-over-year, with some categories, such as medical apps, more than doubling from Q1 2021 .

According to an analysis of the world’s 100 most used mobile apps in each category, medical apps saw the strongest year-over-year usage growth, with average MAUs more than doubling in top apps.

Navigation apps saw the second strongest usage growth, up 23.5% year-over-year, followed by travel with nearly 19% year-on-year growth.

Comparatively, in the previous first two quarters, business apps had seen the strongest growth. In Q1 2021, usage of top business apps grew 95.3% YoY and in Q1 2020, the category grew 42.4% YoY.

“The uptick in navigation and travel app usage in the first quarter of 2022 can be attributed to consumers taking more trips now that the pandemic is somewhat under control in some parts of the world,” Sensor Tower said.

“The increase in MAUs among top medical apps was mainly due to an increase in the use of Covid-related apps such as PeduliLindungi in Indonesia, vaccine passport app in South Korea COOV and Conecte SUS in Brazil. It could also be a result of users acclimating to turning to mobile devices for such purposes,” he said.

Almost all of the categories analyzed in the report saw an increase in usage, except for weather, lifestyle, news, and games.

Mobile games saw the largest decline in usage compared to the first quarter of 2021, down 3.8% year-on-year.

Mobile Games

Consumer spending on mobile games fell 7.1% year-on-year to $21 billion in the first quarter of 2022, with the App Store and Google Play seeing less revenue compared to the prior year period .

Mobile games on Apple’s platform recorded approximately $12.9 billion, down 2.3% year-on-year, while Google Play recorded a 13.8% year-on-year decline in its mobile game revenue at $8.1 billion.

“The three highest-grossing mobile games overall as well as on the App Store all came from Chinese publishers this quarter,” according to the report.

Tencent’s Honor of Kings and PUBG Mobile, including its Chinese localization Game for Peace, took first and second place, with $735.4 million and $643 million generated across the two stores, respectively. MiHoYo’s Genshin Impact came third with $551 million in player spend.

NCSoft’s Lineage W was the top earner on Google Play, followed by Moon Active’s Coin Master and King’s Candy Crush Saga.

Global mobile game downloads increased 2.1% year-on-year in the quarter to 14.4 billion, driven primarily by Google Play, which grew 2.5% year-on-year to 12.1 billion first downloads this quarter. App Store game installs were flat year-over-year at 2.3 billion.

Garena’s hugely popular battle royale title, Garena Free Fire, has had the most downloads on the App Store and Google Play as well as the Google Marketplace, with 71.2 million installs across both platforms “, according to the report.

It was followed by Sybo Games’ Subway Surfers with 66.4 million installs across both stores. It also tops the charts on the App Store. The third most downloaded title overall was Homa Games’ Merge Master – Dinosaur Fusion with 49.4 million installs.

While not Josh Wardle’s viral Wordle, Goldfinch Studios’ Wordle! still managed to take second place on the Apple App Store with 13.8 million installs.

“Compared to the double-digit percentage growth recorded by both stores in 2021, spending growth slowed in the first quarter of 2022. This represents a normalization of the market after supercharged growth at the start of Covid-19, as well as a slowdown in spending may be due to factors such as the rising cost of living,” Sensor Tower said.

“However, categories that saw an increase due to Covid-19 continued to see usage climb year over year,” he said.

It should be noted that the revenue estimates according to the report do not include local taxes, in-app advertising or in-app user spending for mobile commerce. Estimates also do not include refunds.

Published on

April 03, 2022

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