New data highlights that Netflix and Spotify were among the top revenue apps of 2016. Sensor Tower has compiled statistics on non-gaming apps – the most downloaded and the ones that generated the most revenue during 2016. It may surprise you to find out that the top apps downloaded are not always the ones that produce the most revenue. The top ten non-gaming apps downloaded in 2016 were (from number one to number ten) Facebook, Messenger, WhatsApp, Instagram, Snapchat, UC Browser, Clean Master, YouTube, Uber, and imo. This study also compares to the top ten Apps in revenues: Spotify, LINE, Netflix, Tinder, Pandora, HBO NOW, LINE Manga, iQIYI, Hulu, and Sing! Karaoke. As you can see, they are entirely different from one another and even vary by iOS and Android.
Revenue from apps continue to grow, and the graph below shows the difference between the Q4 2015 versus the Q4 2016. The chart also illustrates the difference in growth between iOS and Android apps. Apple's revenue grew over 60-percent from $3.4 billion to $5.4 billion whereas Android's revenue grew over 82-percent and increased from $1.8 billion to $3.3 billion. These figures mean that overall app revenue grew over 67-percent in one year, which is quite an accomplishment and should make good reading for App developers. Download percentages are lower when compared to overall revenue from the total apps being used, but year-over-year growth during the Q4 2015 and 2016 was up 17-percent.
When you look at the top downloads for 2016, they are not far off what was noted for 2015, but there are a few interesting observations. One is how Facebook continues to be the first or second top downloaded app each year. While most people already have Facebook on their device, the number of new phones sold each year likely accounts for the consistency of being at the top of the top ten. It is also interesting to see how Uber is climbing the overall list (and on iOS) but still does not show up on Android's top ten list. It certainly indicates the popularity of Uber and how smartphone owners are adapting when it comes to their transportation needs. The listing also shows smartphone owner dependency on using communicative apps, rather than making an actual phone call.