This Week in Apps #113 - That's Pretty Ambitious!

Ariel Ariel
6 minute read 5/12/22

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. Revenue Index (30 Day)

App Store
369.83 -2.5%
Google Play
315.12 +11.0%


1. How Far is Twitter From Elon's Target?

April is behind us, which means it's time to check in on Twitter's subscription revenue. That's something I've been doing since Twitter Blue went live back at the end of 2021.

But this month it's a bit more interesting. See, new (almost) chief Elon Musk has big hopes for Twitter's subscription business. Elon wants 69 million paying subscribers by 2025.

Let's have a look at Twitter's in-app revenue to see how far they are right now.

According to our estimates, Twitter's net revenue from in-app purchases grew to $368,000 in April. That's an increase of 18% from March when Twitter hit the $300K mark for the first time.

How many subscribers is that? We know Twitter Blue costs $2.99/mo, so we can divide. That's gross revenue though, and, our estimate is net, so first we need to change that $2.99 to $2.10, which is what Twitter gets after Apple and Google take their fees.

According to those numbers, Twitter currently has a little over 175,000 paying subscribers as of April.

Not bad!

Wait, actually, not great either... If you've been following the newsletter for long enough, you know that I believe this could have been muuuuch larger if they launched Twitter Blue as a company of Twitter's scale could and should.

Elon has his work cut out for him. To get to 69 million subscribers, a number I imagine has some significance, Elon's Twitter will need to add a little over 2 million new subscribers every month starting right now.

175,000 after 7 months vs. 2 million every month. Not impossible, but some things will have to change. I'll leave my thoughts on what for a different medium. I'm sure Elon has a few ideas.

Do you think he can pull it off?

2. Is Facebook Officially a Relic? The Most Downloaded Apps

I crunched the numbers and ranked the most downloaded apps in April, and I'm excited to share that things are pretty much the same as March. With a few tiny exceptions.

TikTok was the most downloaded app in the world in April. It made its way into 51 million devices, according to our estimates. Much like March.

Rival Instagram was right behind it with 47 million estimated downloads. It was the most downloaded app on Google Play and the third most downloaded app in the App Store, having been pushed a spot by Google Maps.

Google Maps is not a stranger to the most downloaded apps in the App Store list, but it's had a great run in April. Whether it's true scientifically or not (it isn't), it feels like COVID's all gone, and the downloads certainly reflect that. Which is why people need a map.

Meta's trio is still at the top overall, but in April, WhatsApp Business also joined the list, having had a strong month on Google Play.

Spotify, another icon that's not a stranger but also not always here, snagged the last spot from official closer Capcut, but not because Capcut didn't make it. It sure did, landing in 7th place. Give it a few more months and it's sitting pretty at 5.

Together, the top 10 most downloaded apps in the world had a combined total of 318 million estimated downloads in April. A smidge shorter than March, but nothing to write home about.

3. App Tracking Transparency Continues to Hurt โ€“ The Most Downloaded Games

I crunched the numbers and ranked the most downloaded games in April, and even though this list has a variety of hypercasual titles, I think it's obvious that a whole year in, Apple's App Tracking Transparency is continuing to make ROI positive advertising a challenge.

Subway Surfers was the most downloaded app in the world in April, scoring 30 million new estimated downloads. It lost its top spot in March after holding it firmly since October, but now it's back.

The rest are, well, a little all over the place. Just like March.

Merge Master was the second most downloaded game in the world, with about half the downloads. The hyper-casual title added 15 million estimated downloads in April, most of which came from Google Play, with only a handful coming from the App Store.

Ludo King, Candy Crush, and Roblox round off the top 5, and a couple of hyper casuals, Garena Free Fire Max (the one that isn't banned in India), and an oldie, occupied the bottom of our list.

Summer is right around the corner, and ATT or not, games need to spend to get visibility. I'm sure we'll see more of this next month.

Together, the top 10 most downloaded games in the world accumulated 143 million downloads in April, roughly 12% lower than March. That's not a scary decrease all things considered, but I'm very interested in seeing what the summer will look like.

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4. Indeed New Thing Hits a Milestone

I've talked about jobs quite a few times in the last few weeks. We looked at LinkedIn, who's seeing demand continue to climb, and Indeed, who's seeing downloads continue to rise.

But did you know that in addition to Indeed's main job searching app, the company also has an app dedicated to finding jobs where you can work remotely?

Work From Anywhere is the name of the app, and it recently crossed a milestone โ€“ A half million downloads!

Yes, it doesn't use Indeed's name on the App Store. It does on Google Play. Why? I suspect it has something to do with not wanting to cannibalize search traffic or not confuse people who search for the app by name. But then again, why have two apps in the first place?

The app launched in April of 2020, right as covid forced the majority of the workforce to start working from home, and has been slowly gaining traction since.

Weekly downloads hit, and crossed, the 10K mark in January, and are now averaging just a little bit above, which means the app will likely hit the 1M mark in early 2023.

Steady climb aside, I have a feeling it'll be sunset way before, though. There's no real reason to split all the effort that goes into building, maintaining, and promoting an app that does pretty much the same thing, but less.

By the way, we're hiring!

5. Eventbrite Beats COVID (and Then Some)!

2022 is seeing the return of everything IRL, from concerts to sports and vacations. I looked at how apps like Ticketmaster and Airbnb have not only seen downloads return to pre-covid level but also grow beyond, and today I have another app to add to the list.

If you've been to any conference pre-covid, you probably know this app.

Eventbrite, an app used to manage event attendance and ticketing, was another one of the IRL collection of apps that lost most of their downloads when the world went into lockdown.

Weekly downloads, which peaked at 242 thousand at the end of 2019 according to our estimates, dropped as low as 28 thousand in April of 2020. They've grown a bit since rising to a high of 138 thousand late last year. But that's still far from where it started.

But then 2022 happened, and Eventbrite saw downloads start to grow gradually until they hit a new high in late April with 264 thousand estimated downloads.

Clearly, these new highs IRL apps are hitting aren't just coincidences and are instead a sign of what's happening. Things are opening up!

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All figures included in this report are estimated. Unless specified otherwise, estimated revenue is always net, meaning it's the amount the developer earned after Apple and Google took their fee.

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