While India is waiting for the election results, waiting to see which team tallies how many votes, there is one tally where India is winning already. For the first time ever, India leads the charge when it comes to the number of mobile apps downloaded. According to the latest reports from Sensor Tower, an app intelligence firm, Indians downloaded a total of 4.5 billion apps collectively in the first quarter of 2019, leaving USA trailing behind in second place with 3 billion mobile app downloads.
Along with the most mobile app downloads, the country also leads the worldwide charts for new downloads from Google Play Store, witnessing a jump of more than 29% from the numbers reported for the first quarter of 2018.
Among the most downloaded mobile apps, short video creation app Tik Tok leads the charge, with the app witnessing an addition of 88.6 million new users during the first quarter of 2019. When you consider the fact that this app was taken down from the mobile app stores for a few days after a directive from the Madras High Court, and still managed to achieve these numbers, this feat seems all the more impressive.
Apart from Tik Tok, the other apps in the list of top 10 most downloaded mobile apps in India are WhatsApp, Like, Hotstar, Facebook, Messenger, SHAREit, Helo, MX Player and UC Browser. As per the usual trends, apps developed by companies from USA and China dominated the lists of top downloaded apps. Hotstar is the only Indian homegrown app to feature in this list.
One of the reasons for an increase in the number of downloads for the Hotstar app could be that this video-streaming platform owns the rights to two of the most popular properties on the internet, in the form of IPL and Game of Thrones. With the ICC Cricket World Cup coming up shortly, one can expect the download numbers to keep increasing.
Speaking of the overall growth in the number of mobile app downloads in India, one of the main reasons being cited is the rapid increase in the number of smartphones being used across the country, with strong penetration in the small towns as well as rural areas. Decreasing mobile internet rates, thanks to the service providers like Jio, is another reason for driving up the number of mobile app downloads.
Sensor Tower’s Head of Mobile Insights said, “The growth in app installs we’re tracking in India is closely tied to the growth in new smartphone owners there, particularly Android users. Since the growth is closely tied to new smartphone users — that will be the largest factor in its stability.” At present India is home to around 400 million smartphone users, a number which is expected to increase by more than 100% by the year 2022, based on a recent study conducted by Cisco, with more than 60% of the population owning smartphones by that time.
Apart from India and USA, Brazil, Russia and Indonesia make up the top 5 for the most mobile app downloads. China was not included in this survey, since Google Play Store is not available in the country.