App Developers Have a Jolly Good Time Due to Record Holiday Sales

SensorTower has recently published a report, showing that a record-shattering 34.5% year-to-year growth was observed this very Christmas across the Google Play and Apple app stores.

Christmas is already recognized as a commercial paradise for most businesses and outlets. Even an entire lockdown won't be able to dampen the spirits of people who, frankly, need a respite from all the current doom and gloom. And with this particular respite come gifts! Considering how most families aren't able to meet each other in person, they seem to have compensated with an array of app purchases.

Worldwide spending on app stores reached $407.6 million, grossly overtaking the $303 million from last Christmas. Most of these sales were attributed to video games, with Tencent's highly popular (if not critically acclaimed) MOBA Honor of Kings taking the figurative crown for the game most invested in over Christmas. The game raked in a total of $10.7 million, stepping up a staggering 205.7% from last year's retrospectively measly $3.5 million. Seems like parents and grandparents either really doted on their children this year, or just handed them money as opposed to physical gifts, leaving them to their devices.

While the mobile gaming industry did remarkably well for itself, other apps chipped off quite a bit of revenue for themselves. TikTok, the darling of Gen Z (who also happen to be the ones getting most of the Christmas cheer), earned a solid $4.7 million worldwide in celebrating Saint Nick. Which, while seeming much less than Honor of Kings' massive returns, is still a big sign of progress for the app. All of this considering how much competition apps such as Facebook and YouTube are attempting to provide, coupled with bans in multiple countries. For better or for worse, TikTok isn't going anywhere for a while.

To no collective surprise, the USA is leading this sudden swarm of money towards the Google Play and Apple stores, dedicating $130 million to our aforementioned global $400 million. While leading in both games and other entertainment apps, the apps themselves to come out on top don't match up with the ones listed above.

As opposed to Honor of Kings, Roblox ended up ruling the US Christmas market, which is expected to say the least. Roblox has had a large impact on youths across the USA, with its massive community being both lauded and satirized in popular culture. The non-gaming entertainment apps were led by Disney+ at the top, another obvious conclusion. Disney's constant acquisitions mean that the platform showcases a myriad of different franchises (Star Wars, the MCU, 20th Century, Pixar, Disney's own movies, etc.) The success of shows like The Mandalorian probably helped out a great deal.

The Apple Store managed to one-up Google Play, as it was responsible for generating 68% of total app spending. Then again, considering the immense growth of the mobile app market, there's room for change in the coming years.
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