New record for global spending on apps in 2021, according to Sensor Tower: TikTok and games like PUBG Mobile are to blame

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new record for global spending on apps in 2021 according.jpg
new record for global spending on apps in 2021 according.jpg

The data collected in the middle of the year already gave us an advance that 2021 would be the year with the most spending on apps and games in history. And so it has been: according to App Annie, forecasts point to ending the month of December with an annual expenditure of 135,000 million dollars, compared to 112,000 million that 2020 left us.

The data handled by Sensor Tower goes in the same direction: it is expected that, when we get to December 31, the spending by iOS and Android users worldwide has reached $ 133 billion in in-app purchases, premium apps, and subscriptions.

We spend more, but we install the same apps

Global App Spending 2021

In the first half of 2021, user spending on apps was record high, both on iOS and Android, as there was a joint increase of 24.8% compared to the same period in the previous year. The last few months have contained that spending a bit, but it is expected that, by the end of 2021, the amount will reach 133,000 million dollars, which will mean a year-on-year growth of 19.7%.

Worldwide, spending by iOS users will reach $ 85.1 billion (17.7% more than in 2020), while Android users will have invested $ 47.9 billion (23.5% more year-on-year). The difference between the two platforms remains the same as in 2020, since App Store earns 1.8 times more revenue than Google Play.

Top Apps Revenue 2021

TikTok, including its Chinese version on iOS, maintains its domain as non-gaming app that earns the most revenue If we combine the data from both stores: in the first 11 months of 2021, it achieved 2 billion dollars, 67% more than the previous year. By the end of the year, Sensor Tower forecasts that the app will have reached 2.3 billion.

If we look only at the App Store, TikTok is also the application – not a game – with the highest earnings, but on Google Play has been overtaken by Google One, which by the end of 2021, will reach $ 1 billion in spending by Android users, an increase of 123% year-on-year.

Global App Downloads 2021

These figures contrast with the number of facilities, which, for the first time, remains relatively stable compared to 2020, with a growth of just 0.5% year-on-year: 143.6 billion in 2021 compared to 142.9 billion in 2020.

Top Apps Downloads 2021

When this year is over, TikTok will be the most downloaded app in the App Store in 2021, but it will accumulate 745.9 million installations in both app stores, representing a 24% year-on-year drop. On Google Play, Facebook tops the charts with roughly 500.9 million installs, but on both platforms it drops 12% with around 624.9 million installs.

Coin Master and Honor of Kings, the winners

Spending on games has also continued to grow in 2021 and, by the end of the year, it is estimated that it will reach 89.6 billion dollars in the App Store and Google Play (12.6% more than in 2020), which is 67, 4% of total spending on mobile applications this year (in 2019, they represented 74.1%, and in 2020, 71.7%. This is due to the growth of other categories such as entertainment, which has been boosted by the pandemic.

Global Mobile Game Spending 2021

On the App Store, gamers are estimated to spend $ 52.3 billion by the end of the year, representing a 9.9% year-on-year increase over 2020. Tencent’s Honor of Kings is the highest grossing iOS game: $ 2.9 billion.

On Google Play, games will cost $ 37.3 billion worldwide in 2021, 16.6% more than the previous year. The highest-grossing title on Android become Coin Master again of Moon Active, whose revenues will reach 912 million in 2021.

Top Mobile Games Revenue 2021

Installs are expected to reach a combined 55.3 billion on the App Store and Google Play by the end of 2021, down 1.6% year-on-year, but this slight fall is within the norm if we take into account the unprecedented increase we saw in 2020 due to the onset of the pandemic.

Global Mobile Game Downloads 2021

Approximately 84% of all game installations (46,700 million) are from Google Play, which has grown in this sense by 1.3% compared to 2020. Garena Free Fire returns to the forefront on Android in terms of downloads, 218.8 million installations were in 2021.

Top Mobile Games Downloads 2021

In the App Store, it is estimated that by the end of 2021 8.6 billion mobile games will have been downloaded worldwide, 14.9% less than the previous year. Tencent will also rank first, but in this case with PUBG Mobile and its Chinese version Game for Peace. The title will reach approximately 47.5 million installs on the App Store by the end of the year.