Global Hot Apps in Q1 Unveiled: Health/Fitness Apps Stood Out, New Players Prefer Mid-core Games

Amid the epidemic, the time for global users to use Apps soared in the first quarter of 2020. Undoubtedly, mobility has become indispensable for all walks of life to operate. Whether or not the App is applied, the competition of attracting users from mobile clients is becoming increasingly intense.

List of Global Hot Apps in Q1, 2020

Gartner, a well-known information firm, had once noted that only one out of 10,000 mobile Apps could eventually succeed. Among the top 10 hot Apps on App Store and Google Play in Q1, 2020, the Apps involving famous distributors and work still prevail.

On Google Play, non-game Apps account for 55% of its total downloads, while the proportion is slightly higher on App Store, up to 65%.

Game Apps have always been the leading force to boost the continuous download growth on Google Play. According to the analysis data of AppSimilar, the change of user behaviors this time is mostly reflected in health/fitness, education, and business Apps. These overlooked categories in the past have shown forceful growth compared with the previous quarter.

Game, picture, video, and other pan-entertainment Apps are also downloaded most on App Store. Similar to Google Play, education, business, and health/fitness Apps all present strong quarterly growth. For example, MyFitnessPal, which ranks third among Google Play’s health/fitness Apps, had moved up to the top of this category in the past month. Not only had the five-star praise in the app store increased but its monthly active users (MAU) had nearly doubled.

The Growth Trend of Game, E-commerce, and Pan-entertainment Apps

As the outbreak of the novel coronavirus epidemic escalates, governments and enterprises have upgraded their responses. At this difficult time, home-bound users utilize their mobile phones to go shopping, manage financial affairs, work efficiently, as well as maintain physical and mental health and cheerfulness. In the first quarter of 2020, there were over 31 billion new App downloads, an increase of 15% compared with the fourth quarter of 2019.

  • Game App: New Players Prefer Mid-core Games

Compared with the first quarter of 2019, the growth performance of mobile games in the first quarter of 2020 is unexpected. In March 2020, the downloads of mobile game Apps grew by 132% annually. The reason for the rapid growth is that people around the world have more time to stay at home, promoting more users to turn to games.

Among them, mid-core games have the highest attention. According to AppSimilar, among the newly simulated mobile game Apps on App Store in 2020, the top 10 Apps with most daily activity users are all scored higher than 4 (5 in total). We can imagine that game players must have spent a lot of time on mid-core games. After all, although causal game Apps are downloaded a number of times, mid-core games have an advantage in the continuous interaction of game experience. 

  • E-commerce App: The Social Distancing Policy Influences E-commerce Apps in the Short Term

The social distancing policy has been carried out across the world since March this year. Therefore, the downloads of e-commerce Apps have declined, with DoorDash the only e-commerce App listed among the top 20 hot Apps on Google Play. Maybe it is because people have to stay at home but the number of couriers does not increase, leading to a longer waiting time for online orders. Meanwhile, users would turn to other ways of entertainment to kill their time, thus lowering the demand for shopping.

However, the well-known cross-border e-commerce platform Shopify estimates that e-commerce sales from mobile devices will account for 54% by 2021. It proves from one side that there is still tremendous growth potential for e-commerce Apps in the long run. The data of AppSimilar also shows that the new distributors of e-commerce Apps increased significantly in March, indirectly reflecting the promising future of this App market. After the social distancing policy gradually loosens, perhaps the demand for users will be activated.

  • Pan-entertainment App: TikTok Becomes the Most Downloaded Mobile App Worldwide

The installations of music and short-video streaming media Apps such as Spolity and TikTok have surged since home-bound isolation was implemented. Consequently, it has become a popular growth spot in the application economy. As per the data of AppSimilar, ByteDance’s Douyin and overseas edition TikTok were downloaded more than 300 million times on the global App Store and Google Play in the first quarter, making it the world’s most downloaded mobile App.


The pandemic has paralyzed global economic activities, but we have witnessed a different growth momentum in the mobile Internet industry. Maybe App distributors must be more resilient if they want to survive this special period.