Top Mobile Games & Apps of 2020 (Including a List of Top Mobile Apps & Games of the Decade)
(This article was originally published on Udonis’ blog.)
In this report, we break down the top mobile games and apps of the past year by monthly active users, downloads, and consumer spend. We have also included a list of the top breakout games and apps for each category.
Let’s find out which apps and games were the most successful in 2020!
(Data Source: AppAnnie State of Mobile 2021)
Top Mobile Games and Apps by Monthly Active Users
As you might expect, Facebook is still the mobile app with the highest MAU. It is followed by WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Instagram.
When it comes to messaging apps like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, it makes sense that they shot to the top in 2020 due to coronavirus lockdown. It made people communicate more virtually and less in person.
The top three mobile games in 2020 by MAU are PUBG Mobile, Candy Crush Saga, and Ludo King.
Top Mobile Games and Apps by Downloads
If we look at top mobile apps by downloads, TikTok was number one in 2020, followed by Facebook, and WhatsApp Messenger.
Right when the pandemic hit, TikTok became even more popular, especially in the US, which is why it was the most downloaded app of 2020.
Top mobile games by downloads in 2020 were two action games, Garena Free Fire and Among Us, as well as Subway Surfers, an arcade game.
The top companies by download in 2020 were Google, which is quite expected, followed by Facebook and ByteDance. Top mobile game publishers were Voodoo, AppLovin, and Crazy Labs.
Top Mobile Games and Apps by Consumer Spend
When we rank mobile apps by consumer spend, Tinder comes up on top, followed by TikTok, and YouTube. It seems that users are ready to spend a lot of money to meet their soulmate on Tinder.
In 2020, the top mobile games by consumer spend were Honour of Kings, Pokémon Go, and Roblox. Furthermore, top mobile game publishers were Tencent, Playrix, and NetEase.
Top Mobile Games of 2020
In this section, we’ll go through the top mobile games of 2020 by downloads, consumer spend, and time spent in AMER (North, Central, and South America).
Top Mobile Games by Downloads
Above, you can see top breakout mobile games in the American market by downloads. Everywhere, except in Brazil, Among Us was the most downloaded game in 2020, and Brain Test: Tricky Puzzles was second.
Top Mobile Games by Consumer Spend
The top games in AMER by consumer spend in 2020 were Roblox (Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, and the US), Coin Master (Canada), and Call of Duty: Mobile (Mexico).
Other games in this list include Garena Free Fire, State of Survival, Saint Seiya: Awakening, PUBG Mobile, Lords Mobile, Pokémon Go, and Gardenscapes.
Top Mobile Games by Time Spent
If we take time spent metric into consideration, the top mobile games in AMER in 2020 were Garena Free Fire in Argentina, and Roblox in Brazil, Canada, Mexico, and the United States.
As you can see, Roblox was extremely successful in 2020, being one of the top games by both consumer spend and time spent.
Top Social Networking Apps of 2020 by MAU
In the section below, I’ll go through the top social media apps of 2020 by monthly active users in three markets: AMER, APAC, and EMEA.
Considering TikTok’s incredible success in the past year, it’s no surprise this mobile app was the top social networking app of 2020 in AMER by monthly active users.
That happened for a couple of different reasons. First, TikTok finally managed to penetrate the American market in a significant way. Furthermore, this app started attracting an older audience as well. Lastly, many people had nothing better to do during the pandemic and TikTok proved to be a great source of entertainment.
In the APAC market, TikTok was number one in 2020 in Australia and China. In India, Telegram was the top social network by MAU. Instagram was the top social media app in Indonesia and Japan. In South Korea, Danggeun Market rose to the top of the list.
The top social networking apps by MAU in EMEA were WhatsApp (France), TikTok (Germany and UK), Telegram (Russia), and EBA (Turkey).
What do all these lists have in common?
TikTok has secured the number one place in many different countries across the three major markets.
Top Video Streaming Apps of 2020
Video streaming apps were also booming during the 2020 pandemic. In most North and South American markets, Netflix was number one by time spent, as you might expect. Amazon Prime was also high on this list.
Top Finance Apps of 2020
Here are the top finance apps of 2020 by MAU in the AMER market: Mercado Pago, Caixa Tem, Yahoo Finance, Bancomer Movil, and Robinhood.
All of the apps on the list are country-specific. For example, Robinhood was the top finance app in the United States, it wasn’t even on the list in other countries, as it’s not being used there.
Top Retail Apps of 2020
Mobile shopping apps also experienced a boost in popularity in 2020. Because of the pandemic and avoiding the risk of Covid-19, many people had to shop online.
In South American countries, the top retail app by time spent was MercadoLibre.
In Canada and the United States, it was, of course, Amazon.
Top Food and Drink Apps of 2020
Food and drink apps are another category that experienced massive growth due to the 2020 pandemic.
If we look at top apps by sessions, PedidosYa was number one in Argentina and IFood Delivery de Comida in Brazil. In Canada and Mexico, UberEats was the most popular food app. In the US, DoorDash took the number one spot.
Just like we’ve seen with finance apps, many of the food and drink apps are location-specific.
Top Education Apps of 2020
The final app category that rose to fame during the 2020 pandemic was education. Most countries around the world went with online schooling.
That’s why it’s no wonder to see Google Classroom as the number one education app in all AMER countries. As well as other apps that help with homeschooling like Brainly and Socratic by Google.
Also, with more free time on their hands, people started learning languages. That’s why we see apps like Duolingo and Cake on this list.
Final Thoughts on Top Mobile Games and Apps of 2020
The 2020 coronavirus pandemic made the whole world rely on mobile apps and games more than ever before.
Categories like retail, food & drink, and education rose to new heights. Social media apps got a new competitor — TikTok. Mobile games provided some fun and de-stressing in these hard times.
It will be interesting to see what this year holds for the mobile app market. We’ll keep you updated!
Since 2018 until today, Udonis Inc. has acquired over 150 million users for mobile apps & games. We’re recognized as a leading mobile marketing agency by 5 major marketing review firms. We helped over 20 mobile apps & games reach the top charts. Want to know how we make it look so effortless? Meet us to find out!