Global customer spending on Apple’s App Store and Google Play grew by 31% year-over-year (y-o-y) in Q1 2021 to reach $31.8 billion. This is per data from Sensor Tower Store Intelligence which postulates that the growth “indicates a lasting lift for the mobile market from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.”
Overall, first-time downloads increased across both App Store and Google Play by 9% y-o-y. This overall growth is largely due to increases seen in downloads on Google Play, as the App Store experienced a decline of 8% y-o-y, accounting for 8.5 billion of the total 36.7 billion first time apps downloaded during the quarter. First-time downloads on Google Play, on the other hand, increased 15% y-o-y from 24.5 billion to 28.2 billion.
That said, it’s the App Store that saw the most global consumer spending during the first quarter of 2021. Spending on in-app purchases, subscriptions and premium apps in the App Store totaled $20.4 billion for the quarter, up 28% from the $15.9 billion spent in Q1 2020. However, consumer spending on Google Play grew at a faster rate (36% y-o-y), up to $11.4 billion from $8.4 billion during the same quarter last year.
TikTok was the top-grossing app overall for Q1. In the US, the app has overtaken Instagram to be the second favorite social media platform among teens. The app has also seen brands up their activity on the platform as more followers flock to their accounts. TikTok was also the #1 top-grossing app on the App Store, with Google One taking the #1 spot on Google Play.
When it comes to first-time downloads, TikTok also topped the overall list as well as for the App Store. Sensor Tower does note, however, that installs of the app fell by 44% y-o-y, with the likely cause being the ban of the app in India.
About the Data: Figures are estimates from Sensor Tower Store Intelligence for the periods between Jan 1 and March 31 2021.