The after-effects of the pandemic surge were still being felt in 2022, with total downloads stalling and in some categories declining, as users shifted their interests and preferences to a “post-Covid” world.
That said, the most downloaded apps of 2022 mirrored in many ways the previous year, with TikTok still on top and Meta’s Instagram, Facebook, and WhatsApp in the top five. TikTok’s video editing tool, CapCut, rounded out the top five.
Business communication apps, such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams, have continued their decline in yearly downloads. Education apps for schools and universities also noticed a steady decline in 2021 figures, as more schools return to fully in-person teaching.
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Several subscription-led sectors, such as health and fitness, meditation, and dating all had lower downloads in 2022 than 2021. Again, it looks like we are at the end of the pandemic spike for many of these apps, which received a lot of sign-ups during 2020 and 2021.
Crypto apps also fell off the map in 2022, due to the crash in the value of many alt-coins and inflation across the globe, scaring investors.
It’s not all doom and gloom however, with many of sectors seeing moderate growth in 2022, such as food and drink, travel, shopping, and social. Artificial intelligence apps, such as Lensa AI and ChatGPT, saw huge amounts of attention in the back-end of 2022.
As we head into 2023, AI is definitely the biggest trend we expect to see on the app side, with Meta, Google, and other players readying their chatbots and other AI tools. If OpenAI ever makes ChatGPT available on iOS and Android, expect it to be one of the most popular apps of the next year.
We have collected data and statistics on the most popular apps by country and by category. Read on below to find out more.
Most Popular Apps Key Statistics
- TikTok was the most downloaded app globally in 2022, with 672 million downloads
- Subway Surfers was the most downloaded game in 2022, with 304 million downloads
- Four of the ten most downloaded apps of 2021 were published by Meta
Most Popular Apps by Country
In this section, we take a look at the most popular apps in each country. We cover global, Brazil, China, India, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Most Popular Apps 2022 (Global)
TikTok retained its spot as the most downloaded app in 2022, and its video editing app CapCut made the top five. Facebook had three apps in the top five.
Most Popular Apps 2022 (United States)
TikTok remained the most popular app in the US as well, increasing its downloads in the country for two years in a row. Cash App climbed again in 2022, cementing itself as the most popular finance app in the US.
Most Popular Apps 2022 (United Kingdom)
After two years as the most downloaded app in the UK, the NHS app dropped to fourth, with less people needing it to travel. BeReal was the third most downloaded app in the country, surpassing Instagram in total downloads.
Most Popular Apps 2022 (China)
WeChat is the most popular app in China, which acts as a home screen for Chinese phone users. It also has thousands of mini-programs, including some of the most popular apps in the country like JD and Pinduoduo, available through its app.
Most Popular Apps 2022 (India)
In 2021, there were dozens of TikTok clones vying for the short-video throne in India. In 2022, Instagram has taken over as the alternative, with 327 million downloads.
Most Popular Apps 2022 (Brazil)
Shein has been embraced fully by Brazilian mobile users as the fashion retailer of choice. Shopee looks to be taking a piece of Mercado Libre’s market share as well, having more downloads than it for the past two years.
Most Popular App by Platform
In this section, we will cover the most popular apps on the two most popular mobile app stores: iOS and Google Play.
Most Popular iOS Apps 2022
TikTok was the most downloaded iOS app for another year, with 212 million downloads.
Most Popular Google Play Apps 2022
TikTok reclaimed the title of most downloaded Google Play app in 2022, with 15 million more downloads than 2021 winner Instagram.
Most Popular App by Category
In this section, we take a look at the ten most popular apps of the year by app category. All values are global unless stated otherwise.
Most Popular Games 2022
Subway Surfers held onto the title of most downloaded game in 2022, with 304 million downloads. Stumble Guys, an arcade version of Fall Guys, broke into the top 10 after one year of release.
|Candy Crush Saga||138|
|Race Master 3D||128|
|8 Ball Pool||120|
|Merge & Fight||110|
|Garena Free Fire||109|
Most Popular Social Apps 2022
Instagram was the most popular social app in 2022 with 547 million downloads, followed by Facebook and WhatsApp.
Most Popular Business Apps 2022
WhatsApp Business was the most downloaded business app in 2022, beating out Zoom and Microsoft Teams. The majority of its downloads are from India.
|Indeed Job Search||44.3|
Most Popular Entertainment Apps 2022
TikTok is by far the most popular entertainment app, with 672 million downloads to second place Netflix’s 165 million. Netflix remains the most popular video subscription service, beating out Amazon Prime Video and Disney+.
|Amazon Prime Video||123|
Most Popular Music & Audio Apps 2022
Spotify continues to be far ahead of other competitors in music and audio, with its 238 million downloads more than double second place StarMaker. Alternatives such as Resso Music and Amazon Music declined in downloads in 2022.
|Beat Maker Pro||36|
|Music & MP3 Player||35|
Most Popular Shopping Apps 2022
Shein, Meesho, and Shopee once again took the top three spots in downloads for shopping apps. All managed to get over 200 million downloads each, with Shein slightly edging it this year with 229 million.
Most Popular Food & Drink Apps 2022
McDonalds retained its place as the most downloaded food and drink app of 2022, with double the downloads of second place Uber Eats. Grab and Zomato saw some growth, with longer lockdowns in India and South-east Asia finally ending in 2022.
|Too Good To Go||27|
Most Popular Travel Apps 2022
The most downloaded travel apps in 2022 mimicked 2021, with Google Maps and Uber top of the leaderboard. Airbnb saw some slight growth in comparison to 2021.
|Where is my Train||46|
Most Popular Education Apps 2022
School and university apps declined significantly in downloads in 2022, while simulation games like Toca Life World and Baby Panda’s Supermarket saw a noticeable upswing in downloads.
|Toca Life World||72|
|Baby Panda's Supermarket||36|
|Toca Kitchen 2||33|
|Baby Panda's Playhouse||28|
Most Popular Dating Apps 2022
Tinder still overshadows the rest of the dating app market, with 64 million downloads to second place Bumble’s 28 million.
|Plenty of Fish||11.3|
Most Popular Health & Fitness Apps 2022
Sweatcoin had a surprising climb up the leaderboards in 2022, after not even making the top 10 in 2021. The old guard of MyFitnessPal, Fitbit, and Strava completely fell out of the top 10.
|Blood Pressure App||51|
|Six Pack in 30 Days||27.3|
Most Popular Money Transfer Apps 2022
PhonePe surpassed PayPal in 2022 to become the most downloaded money transfer app. Three of the top five money transfer apps are primarily based in India.
Most Popular Cryptocurrency Apps 2021
Binance remains the most popular cryptocurrency exchange by downloads, usage and volume. Crypto.com surpassed Coinbase in total downloads, although Coinbase still has more users.
Most Popular Apps of Previous Years
We have collected statistics of the most downloaded apps and games of previous years as well.
Most Popular Apps (2021)
Most Popular Games (2021)
|Garena Free Fire||154|
|Candy Crush Saga||119|
Most Popular Apps (2020)
Most Popular Games (2020)
|Garena Free Fire||218|
|Candy Crush Saga||138|
Most Popular Apps (2019)
Most Popular Games (2019)
|Garena Free Fire||327|
|Fun Race 3D||210|
|Color Bump 3D||205|
|My Talking Tom 2||162|
|Run Race 3D||158|