ABOUT $170 billion was spent on 230 billion apps downloads in 2021 across the globe.

Analytics firm, App Annie, which revealed this in its yearly State of Mobile report, disclosed that the data were pulled together based on the download, consumer spends and usage estimates available through its intelligence.

Top apps explored in the year include Tinder, TikTok,  YouTube, Disney,  Google One, BIGO Live, Zoom,  Google Meet, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, Telegram and Snapchat. The games include Free Fire, Among Us, Subway Surfers, Brain Out, among others.

The report revealed that China took gold in the most downloaded apps Olympics, clocking a staggering 98.4 billion. The second was India with 26.6 billion and third was the US with 12.2 billion. China also came top on consumer app spending at $56.8 billion. The second was the US with $44 billion and the third Japan with $20.7 billion.

App Annie said seven out of every 10 minutes spent on mobile was spent on social, photo, and video apps. The report said: “While Photo & Video apps (e.g. YouTube and TikTok) have seen an increase in market share of time spent, this has largely not been at the expense of current habits. Rather, consumers have turned historically ‘non-mobile’ time into time spent in apps and games.

“So basically we spent more time staring at our phones last year, probably because we were locked down for a lot of it, or at least working from home.”

The report disclosed that two million new apps and games were released in 2021, which brings the total number of apps and games ever released on iOS and Google Play to over 21 million.

It stressed that 233 apps or games generated over $100 million each, and 13 of them surpassed $1 billion, which is apparently up 20 per cent.

Accordingly, there are some demographic/behavioural variables in the report as well. Apparently sports apps ‘overindex’ heavily with males in each market they looked at, whereas food and drink apps tended to have more females.

“The difference can be subtle in the case of the US for food and drink and more dramatic in other markets like Japan,” it said. “We also see that the most used apps in each country tend to buck category. For instance, shopping apps, on the whole, tend to skew more females overall, yet Amazon skews more males in Japan, the UK, Germany, France and Canada. Only in the US does Amazon skew more females. Our analysis is limited to males and females only and is not representative of all gender identities.”

The report claimed that the number of total hours spent watching video streaming apps was up 16 per cent on ‘pre-pandemic levels’.

App Annie said demand for avatar social apps grew amid interest in metaverses during 2021, and consumer spending on dating apps passed the $4 billion mark in 2021, representing a 95 per cent increase since 2018.

Further, it said mobile ad spend came in at $295 million, which was up 23 per cent year on year and apparently means mobile now represents 70 per cent of total ad spend.

Elsewhere, the report said $116 billion was spent on mobile games – a 28 per cent year on year increase, finance app downloads clocked in at 5.9 billion, and 100 billion hours were spent on online shopping apps, up 18 per cent.



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