The times they are a-changin'!

The data for the top apps of 2022 so far by downloads is in and we’re surprised to report some new kids on the block. Not only have new social commerce apps broken into the top charts, there’s also been a rise of new market leaders in the entertainment and finance categories.

Below, find our coverage of H1 2022 top app trends across categories with all data insights provided by our friends at Apptopia.

Most Downloaded Apps Overall

Top apps in the world in 2022 so far

If you’ve been following top app trends throughout the pandemic, then it won’t be surprising to hear that the top app of H1 2022 was none other than video-sharing phenomenon: TikTok. That being said, TikTok’s new installs have slowed notably compared to its 2021 growth. This has created more space for Instagram and Snapchat to make gains. Both video-sharing competitors are on pace to finish out 2022 with more installs than they had in 2021.

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Source: Apptopia

Newcomers to the top 10 most downloaded apps globally include two ecommerce apps: Meesho and Shopee. According to Apptopia, Meesho and Shopee’s breakout onto the top charts represents the first time in three years that an ecommerce, retail or shopping app has made the top downloads list.

Top apps in the U.S. of 2022 so far

In the U.S. market specifically, TikTok also led in downloads. Additionally, the U.S. chart also included two ecommerce apps: SHEIN and Amazon.

Also notable: HBO Max did not make the top apps list even though it was the most downloaded app in the U.S. last year. The only entertainment app that made the chart was Disney+. This reflects the slew of popular releases the streaming app has launched already this year; including, West Side Story and Obi-Wan Kenobi.

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Source: Apptopia

Top shopping apps

Next, we’re taking a deeper look at the categories of apps that made the overall top apps list. In the shopping category, breakout titles Meesho and Shopee took spots #1 and #2, respectively.

Both apps do social commerce in APAC. Meesho enables resellers to sell their wares on social channels like Instagram and WhatsApp. On the other hand, Shopee enables consumers to engage in group buying to get discounts. The more individuals in the group, the greater the discounts. Shopee has also increased its engagement and retention through play-to-earn games and dedicated currency. Finally, both Meesho and Shopee charge a remarkable 0% commission fee, highlighting their appeal to new users.

The next two spots were taken by the ecommerce apps featured on the U.S. charts top apps list: SHEIN and Amazon.

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Source: Apptopia

Top entertainment apps

Spotify was the most downloaded entertainment app in the world in the first half of 2022. Netflix was the second most downloaded entertainment app, despite its slowing growth with the rise of rival streaming services. This highlights that while Netflix’s retention challenges have affected its

market share in the U.S., it still dominates in streaming worldwide.

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Source: Apptopia

As noted above, while Disney+ ranked #1 in the top 10 most downloaded apps for streaming in the U.S., Netflix did not.

Disney+’s lead over Netflix by downloads in the U.S. market aligns with their revenue comparison. While Netflix has more market share globally than Disney+, it drove 76% less revenue in the first half of the year. According to Apptopia data, Disney+ drove over $234 million in revenue while Netflix drove only $55.28 million.

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Source: Apptopia

Along with Disney+, other Netflix competitors topped the global charts, including Amazon Prime Video and HBO Max. In fact, the majority of top entertainment apps (six in total) fell in the streaming category. This reflects streaming viewership’s steady stronghold as the pandemic continues.

Top food and food delivery apps of 2022 so far

In worldwide downloads, McDonald’s app led the way by a large margin. In fact, McDonald’s app beat out second-most downloaded food delivery app, Uber Eats, by a margin of 70%. McDonald’s app was also the leader in downloads in 2021, showing its steady hold on mobile dining purchases worldwide.

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Source: Apptopia

Notably, McDonald’s and Starbucks were the only global chains to make the top chart; versus aggregator food service apps that allow consumers to order from a variety of restaurants. The majority of apps featured on the list were aggregator food delivery apps.

In the U.S., on the other hand, there was a more even distribution of brands versus aggregators. DoorDash led in downloads — and has each year since 2019. This reflects DoorDash’s successful expansion into rural areas of the country, versus its competitors which have focused in urban centers.

To dive deeper on how DoorDash has maintained its stronghold in the U.S. food delivery app market using key retention and retargeting strategies, read our recent blog here.

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Source: Apptopia 

Top finance apps of 2022

When it comes to global payment apps, PayPal dominates in growth. After PayPal, PhonePe — based in India — is the second highest driver of downloads. PhonePe is a “Super App”. In other words, it enables users to fulfill a variety of needs, from sending friends money to investing in the stock market and more. Super app functionality like this is rarer in apps based in the U.S. However, given both PayPal and Cash App’s expansion in offerings recently, it seems like a trend finance apps are aligning with.

Also notable — there were no crypto apps listed on the top chart in the first half of 2022. This is a stark contrast to last year’s download leaders and reflects the steady decline of crypto apps since November 2019.

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Source: Apptopia


Top Trends & Takeaways of The Top Apps of 2022 So Far

What apps have driven the most growth in the first half of 2022 so far? Here are the highlights.

    • Top Apps Overall: TikTok continues to be the most downloaded app in the world. However, its growth has slowed compared to 2021.
      • Instagram & Snapchat gain steam: It seems Meta-owned Instagram and Snapchat are closing in on TikTok’s lead. Both apps are on pace to drive more installs than they did last year. This shows the success of competitive strategies, including Reels, which Instagram launched in 2020 and expanded to the Facebook platform last year.
  • Growth of social commerce apps in APAC: Meesho and Shopee broke out into the top charts this year, reflecting the rise of social commerce in growing markets outside the U.S. Notably, ecommerce apps have not made the top 10 list in the last 3 years.
    • Netflix loses market share in the U.S., maintains lead globally: Spotify took the top spot and Netflix the second. While Netflix leads in global downloads, in the U.S. market, it does not. In fact, competitor Disney+, which holds the #4 spot globally, took #1 in the U.S. market for the first half of 2022. This shows that Netflix’s retention woes might be affecting its market share in the U.S. but it still dominates global streaming.
    • DoorDash continues to win the food delivery app war in the U.S.: While UberEats took #2 in the global food app chart by downloads, in the U.S. market, DoorDash led. The food delivery app seems to have secured its stronghold in the U.S. market with key retention strategies and an expansion into rural areas.
  • Finance apps lean into Super App Trend: PayPal leads and PhonePe — an India-based “Super App” took second. Super app functionalities are gaining traction in the U.S. with PayPal expanding its offerings in a similar trend. Notably, no crypto apps made the top chart this year.

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