Facebook, Candy Crush Among 2013's Most Popular Apps
Another year, another hundred-million users accessing Facebook from their smartphones. The popular social networking service topped Nielsen's 2013 smartphone app chart for average monthly users, outranking Twitter and a bevy of Google applications.
According to Nielsen's report on iOS and Android app performance, Facebook enjoyed an average of 103,420,000 unique users per month in 2013, which is a 27-percent increase from last year. Facebook-owned picture app Instagram ranked 7th, with 31,992,000 users logging on every month to snap and hashtag their favorite moments.
Google's apps comprised half of the top ten, with Google Search, Google Play, YouTube, Google Maps and Gmail ranking 2nd to 6th, respectively. Apple's built-in Maps and Stocks apps took the 8th and 9th spots, while Twitter sat at the bottom of the top ten with more than 30 million unique users.
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Instagram and Apple Maps saw the biggest year-over-year improvements, with each app's user base expanding by more than 60 percent. Instagram gained video functionality in 2013 while Apple's Maps got a full overhaul for iOS 7, which could explain the major spike in app usage.
Apple released its own list of top free iPhone app downloads for 2013, which unsurprisingly saw popular puzzle game "Candy Crush Saga" at the top. Facebook ranked 8th on Apple's list, while YouTube's 2nd place iPhone rating is two spots higher than Nielsen's iOS and Android report. While it didn't crack Nielsen's top 10, the Vine video app was 4th on Apple's list, likely because the program launched first on iPhone.
It's no shocker to see Facebook, YouTube and Candy Crush at the top of year-end app lists, but there is some interesting disparity between what's popular on the iPhone and what's popular across iOS and Android handsets. Will the iPhone retain limited-time app exclusivity over the next year, or will more developers aim for simultaneous releases on both platforms?