Now that we have stepped into 2020, we can find out what are the top mobile games and apps of 2019 and the past decade.
It has been a great year for the mobile market. Users have downloaded a record-breaking number of apps in 2019 (120 billion!). That is 5% more than in 2018. Consumer spend also saw a rise in 2019 and approached $90 billion globally. We can only expect those numbers to grow in 2020.
Mobile games have gotten even more popular in 2019. According to AppAnnie, as much as 74% of consumer spend comes from mobile games. Furthermore, 33% of app installs are mobile games and they account for 10% of the time spent on mobile devices.
In this report, we break down the top mobile games and apps of 2019 by downloads, consumer spend, and worldwide revenue. We have also included a list of the top breakout games and apps, as well as top mobile games and apps of the decade.
Top Mobile Games & Apps of 2019 by Downloads
In their annual report, AppAnnie has ranked the top mobile games and apps of 2019 by downloads. And the results are very interesting.
The survival shooter Free Fire takes the first place and is officially the most downloaded mobile game of 2019. Tencent?s PUBG Mobile is in second place, while Subway Surfers is third on the list with 2.7 billion downloads.
While Free Fire and PUBG Mobile were expected to be at the top, a lot of gamers were surprised to see Subway Surfers in the top three. Many don?t consider it to be either good or original. However, it?s undeniable that it?s still the third most downloaded game of 2019, whether you like it or not.
When it comes to top apps by downloads, Facebook rules the charts. The first three places are Facebook Messenger, Facebook app, and WhatsApp. What?s surprising is that TikTok came in fourth place, surpassing both Instagram and Snapchat.
Does this mean 2020 will be the year when TikTok becomes the most popular social media network? Who knows. It will be very interesting to see how things play out.
Top Mobile Games & Apps of 2019 by Consumer Spend
Reports show that mobile gaming is responsible for the majority of consumer spend. However, different subscription models have enabled apps to amass more revenue in 2019. We can expect that trend will continue in 2020. In fact, almost all top 100 apps by consumer spend have a subscription option.
Tinder, Netflix, and Tencent Video are the top three apps by consumer spend. Interestingly, Netflix was number one last year, while Tinder was second. So those two have switched places in 2019.
If we look at consumer spend, top mobile games of 2019 are Sony?s Fate/Grand Order followed by Honour of Kings and Candy Crush Saga.
Top Breakout Games & Apps of 2019
Breakout games and apps are the ones who saw the biggest growth in 2019.
The past year has been a record-breaking year when it comes to downloads and consumer spend. App publishers can look forward to 2020 when consumer spend is projected to grow by 15%.
Top Breakout Apps and Games by Downloads
If we look at top breakout apps by downloads, 4 out of 10 are photo and video editing apps. Likee, a video editing tool, came in the first place. That tells you short video content is getting increasingly popular among users. Noizz, that came second, is also a video app from the same publisher (YY Inc).
When it comes to top breakout games by downloads, the first three are hyper-casual games from the Good Job Games company. In general, hyper-casual mobile games are ruling the top breakout games charts (7 out of 10). Two highly-anticipated releases (Call of Duty:Mobile and Mario Kart) also made the list of top breakout games.
Top Breakout Apps and Games by Consumer Spend
When it comes to top breakout apps by consumer spend, video streaming apps rule the charts, with YouTube being number one. There are also two dating apps represented (Tinder and Bumble App).
The number one breakout game by consumer spend in 2019 is Tencent?s Game for Peace. In fact, Tencent has been incredibly successful and secured the top three places in the charts. Some of the other titles that made it to charts are the popular Brawl Stars, hyper-casual Coin Master, and mobile strategy Rise of Kingdoms.
Top Mobile Games by Revenue for December 2019
AppAnnie has also put together a list of top mobile games by revenue for December 2019. This chart combines revenue from Google Play and the App Store. However, it doesn?t include data from third-party Android stores in China or other regions.
When it comes to overall revenue, PUBG Mobile is number one followed by Honor of Kings. So Tencent is leading the game with two top spots on the charts. Lineage M, Coin Master, Rise of Kingdoms, Fantasy Westward, and Fate/Grand Order ranked up over the previous month. Pokmon GO is the only one on the list that ranked down since November.
If we look only at the App Store revenue, PUBG Mobile and Honor of Kings are still at the top. Fantasy Westward and Candy Crush Saga are in the third and fourth place respectively. Three Kingdoms Strategic ranked down since November.
Google Play revenue charts are slightly different. Tencent?s titles are lower at fourth and fifth place, while Lineage M is number one. Coin Master, PUBG Mobile, and Fate/Grand Order ranked up over the previous month.
Top 10 Mobile Games & Apps of the Decade by Downloads
To conclude this report, let?s look at the top mobile games and apps of the decade. The titles are ranked by the number of all-time downloads worldwide from 2010 to the end of 2019. It combines both Google Play and App Store download data.
Top 10 Mobile Apps of the Decade
- Facebook Messenger
- WhatsApp Messenger
- UC Browser
Top 10 Mobile Games of the Decade
- Subway Surfers
- Candy Crush Saga
- Temple Run 2
- Clash of Titans
- Hill Climb Racing
- Minion Rush
- Fruit Ninja
- 8 Ball Pool
Final Thoughts on Mobile Games & Apps of 2019
With 2019 behind us, it?s safe to say it has been an eventful year for the mobile app and gaming industry. It was fun to look at apps and games fight to be number one and maximize their revenue.
There were two new hot releases (Call of Duty:Mobile and Mario Kart) which mobile gamers waited for a long time. Hyper-casual mobile games got even more popular in 2019 and we can expect that trend to continue.
We also saw the rise of the social media network TikTok. It slowly but surely crept up on Instagram and ultimately surpassed it on the list of top mobile apps by downloads. Another big trend that will continue in 2020 is short videos, which is why many of the top apps were video editing apps.
It?s going to be interesting which app and games will rise to the top in 2020 and which are going to be forgotten. Stay tuned as we bring you more reports on the mobile app and gaming industry in 2020.
Are you surprised by the lists of top mobile games and apps of 2019 or did you expect these results? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below!
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