Consumer spending on Apple’s App Store and Google Play soared to new heights as users turned to their mobile devices for education, employment, and entertainment, according to new data fro the Sensor Tower research group.
Consumers spent nearly US$111 billion globally on in-app purchases, subscriptions, and premium apps across both marketplaces, according to preliminary Sensor Tower Store Intelligence data. This figure represents 30.2% year-over-year growth from 2019 when app stores generated $85.2 billion.
Globally, consumer spending on the App Store reached $72.3 billion, up 30.3% year-over-year from $55.5 billion in 2019. As in previous years, this exceeded the amount users spent on Google Play, which grew 30% year-over-year from $29.7 billion in 2019 to $38.6 billion.
The App Store generated 87.3% more in consumer spending than the Play store, and both platforms experienced roughly the same year-over-year growth. Aside from games, entertainment category apps saw the most user spending on the App Store, growing 29.3% year-over-year to $5.3 billion, according to Sensor Tower.
First-time installs set a new record in 2020 as the App Store and Google Play collectively reached nearly 143 billion, up 23.7% from approximately 115.5 billion in 2019. This is around 14 percentage points higher than the year-over-year growth experienced by both stores in the previous year.
On the App Store, the Photo & Video category saw the most non-game app installs, climbing 8.7% from 2.3 billion in 2019 to 2.5 billion.