35 key figures on mobile applications

35 key figures on mobile applications


When launching a mobile application, knowing the statistics and global trends of the market helps to find the right positioning, to ensure success. Mobile application market in the world and in France, mores and uses of mobile applications, ranking of the most popular applications by mobile users: here are the key figures to know about mobile applications.

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Mobile application market statistics

According to AppAnnie’s 2021 report:

  • $143 billion was spent on app stores in 2020, an annual growth of 20%.
  • Among these expenditures, mobile games take a major share, and the 2021 forecast amounts to more than 120 billion dollars for video game applications. Mobile video games are the main platform for accessing this medium, ahead of consoles and computers.
  • In 2020, $240 billion was invested by companies in mobile advertising, a growth of 26% in one year. The forecast is $290 billion for 2021.

Globally, the behavior of users of mobile phones with applications has continued the same dynamic for many years. A dynamic indicating a constant growth of the mobile applications market:

  • Globally, the time spent on the phone in 2020 is 4.2 hours per day, which is 20% more than in 2019. TikTok is in the top 5 apps with the longest daily usage time, a usage time that increases faster compared to other applications such as Facebook. Forecasts for 2021 estimate the number of active TikTok users at 1.2 billion.
  • Consumers are showing an ever-increasing interest in apps, with a new record for downloads in 2020: 218 billion apps downloaded globally, up 7% from the previous year.
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The most popular apps in France

The same 2021 report from AppAnnie zooms in on the rankings of the most popular apps in France in the mobile app market:

  • The 3 most downloaded mobile gaming apps: Coin Master, Among Us and Brain Out. The strategy game State of Survival is in 3rd position among the games that generate the most revenue; Coin Master, Scabble GO, and ROBLOX are the top 3 in the ranking of gaming apps by time spent by users.
  • The 5 e-commerce applications that record the longest duration of use in France: Vinted, AliExpress, Leboncoin, Amazon and Shein.
  • The 5 video streaming apps that record the longest usage time in France: Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Twitch, Molotov and Disney+.

All categories combined, and with the exception of the TousAntiCovid application, the most downloaded iOS applications in France in 2021 are, according to Apptopia:

  1. whatsapp messenger
  2. Youtube
  3. Snapchat
  4. TikTok
  5. instagram
  6. facebook messenger
  7. Facebook
  8. Google Maps
  9. Spotify
  10. netflix

The downloads mainly relate to social network applications. Note that Telegram appears in the ranking of the 20 most downloaded applications in France in 2021.

The most popular apps in the world

The popularity of applications can be measured in several ways: number of downloads, average user rating or profitability of the application. AppAnnie, in its 2021 report on 2020 figures, publishes the following rankings:

  • The 5 most downloaded applications, excluding video games: TikTok, Facebook, WhatsApp Messenger, Zoom and Instagram.
  • The top 5 mobile apps, excluding video games, by consumer spending: Tinder, TikTok, YouTube, Disney+ and Tencent Video, a Chinese video streaming app.
  • Top 5 video game apps by consumer spend: Honor of Kings, Pokémon Go, ROBLOX, Monster Strike and Coin Master.
  • Top 10 apps by active users worldwide: Facebook, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, Amazon, Twitter, Netflix, TikTok, Spotify and Snapchat.
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The mobile applications market in France in a few figures

In 2019, France Num, the official government portal for the digital transformation of companies, published these figures:

  • Applications account for 89% of the time spent on a phone by the French.
  • The conversion rate on apps is 7 times higher than on mobile versions of sites.

In a context where application downloads in France are following exponential growth, for which social networks are the main responsible, France Num publishes in 2021 more recent data on the use of mobile social network applications, classified by number of users:

  1. YouTube, with 49.6 million users, appeals to a mixed population, mostly between 25 and 45 years old.
  2. Facebook has 33 million users, most of them over 35 years old.
  3. Instagram has 24 million users, with a higher proportion of women and aged 25 to 45.
  4. On LinkedIn, the 21 million French members are mostly male and over 35, with higher incomes.
  5. Of Snapchat’s 24.5 million users, 54% are women and 60% are between the ages of 13 and 24.

The lifespan of a downloaded application

A 2021 report provided by Adjust on the mobile e-commerce app market provides insight into the lifespan of apps. For this purpose, Adjust measures the retention rate of apps, i.e. the time elapsed between downloading and uninstalling the app by the user.

  • The retention rate on day 1 is 26%, i.e. the uninstall rate is 74% the day after downloading.
  • The retention rate decreases to 17% after 7 days of use.
  • After 15 days, the retention rate is 14%.
  • On day 30, the retention rate is reduced to 11%.
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Among the reasons that lead users to uninstall an application:

  • Insufficient storage space.
  • Persistent bugs in the app.
  • A design that deteriorates the user experience.
  • An application neither engaging nor effective.

Retention rates, in any event, vary widely from one category of application to another. A mobile weather application, for example, obtains an increased retention rate insofar as the user is informed about the weather on a daily basis. In 2018, Adjust categorized mobile app lifespans:

  • 10.8 days for e-commerce applications.
  • 10.2 days for travel applications.
  • 8.8 days for health apps.
  • 7.3 days for publications applications.
  • 6.9 days for business applications.
  • 6.4 days for educational applications.
  • 4.7 days for so-called “useful” applications.
  • 3.4 days for gaming apps.
  • 2.3 days for “social” applications.
  • 1.2 days for lifestyle apps.
  • 0.5 days for entertainment applications.

To go further, download this free guide to consumer psychology and find outHow to Create Content That Engages Your Audience.Download the Primer on Consumer Psychology

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