This Week in Apps is a short, no-fluff, round-up of interesting things that happened in the mobile industry. Here are our top highlights.
U.S. Mobile Download Index: App Store 97.94, Google Play 80.97
📈 Downloads are down across both platforms this week as we head into the mid-February dip, which happenes every year. With one big exception, the finance category grew by 33% on the App Store and 22% on Google Play after the Robinhood debacle.
1. The rise of Clubhouse
Clubhouse, the still-in-private-beta audio-first social network, where Elon Musk interviewed Robinhood's CEO earlier in the week, is proving to be more than just a gimmicky idea.
This week, daily downloads hit a new all-time high, and this wasn't even Elon's doing. Clubhouse has been rising for quite a while now.
Clubhouse saw 159K new downloads on Sunday, and has stayed around that level since, according to our estimates.
This new shift has pushed the app's total downloads beyond the 3M mark, with most of those downloads taking place over the last few weeks.
Do you think audio-first is going to really take off once the app is no longer invite-only? I have my doubts.
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2. Uber's drinking and driving
Not at the same time...
Food delivery has become a major part of Uber's operation in 2020, and its saving grace, as the pandemic hit, so this acquisition makes a lot of sense. I called it Uber's upside-down year because downloads of its human and food delivery apps practically swapped.
Drizly, similarly, had a magnificent year of growth in 2020, with more than 1.9M new estimated downloads. That's up from 700K downloads in 2019. When compared with other apps dedicated to alcohol-delivery, Drizly is on top and not be a small margin.
3. All PR is good PR for WhatsApp, apparently
After a few weeks of controversy, WhatsApp is back on top and bigger than ever. Last week, WhatsApp hit two new all-time highs: most daily downloads on the App Store (455K), and most downloads in a month (11.5M), according to our estimates.
This high comes after Facebook misstepped while attempting to update its terms, leading to a media frenzy that gave rivals Signal and Telegram millions of new users, and resulted in WhatsApp losing around 30% of downloads for a few weeks.
It looks like iPhone users have forgiven Facebook's brashness (or forgot about it).
The previous high, of 434K estimated downloads, was recorded just before this happened. I wonder what the trend would have been like if Facebook hadn't decided to change the terms.
Did you leave WhatsApp in January?
4. Peacock scores
If you've been reading the newsletter for a while, you know my interest in streaming apps and their performance. If you're new here, go ahead and subscribe.
Peacock, NBC's fairly new ad-based entry into the race, hit a new milestone in January. Peacock's Premium and Premium Plus upgrades have earned the app more than $2M in gross revenue ($1.4M after Apple and Google take their cut) in January, the first month at the 2 mark.
Month over month revenue growth of 71% is impressive and a good reminder that NBC, much like Disney, has a lot of popular content to bring to the table. Unlike Disney+, however, Peacock has a lot more growing to do, and its freemium approach is most likely the best way to do it.
5. AppLovin get into attribution
AppLovin has announced it'll acquire attribution SDK provider Adjust. The ad network has been making a variety of strategic acquisitions as it plans to IPO.
The market for attribution services isn't small, but for the most part, is controlled by a small number of companies, adjust being one of those.
Based on our SDK Intelligence data, Adjust is currently installed in 22K iOS and Android apps and games, placing it 4th in a category that's long been lead by AppsFlyer. After the acquisition, that might change.
AppLovin's reach counts more than 88K apps and (mostly) games, so once the two combine, they're sure to give AppsFlyer and the rest of the top dogs some stiff competition.
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Note: All figures included in this report are estimated. Revenue is always net, meaning it's the amount the developer earned after Apple and Google took their fee.