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APP-ETITE

These are the most popular iOS apps and games of all time

Mike Murphy
By Mike Murphy

Technology editor

This post has been corrected.

Next week, Apple will—most likely—be announcing new versions of the iPhone and iPad, along with releasing the newest version of its mobile operating system iOS 9. It remains to be seen whether a new operating system or new devices will affect the types of apps we download. But a new report from app-tracking firm App Annie shows that our habits on our iOS devices haven’t changed much over the years.

Facebook—first released in 2008—is the most downloaded app in the world of all time, and Candy Crush Saga, which debuted November 2012, is the most downloaded game ever.

According to App Annie, which tracks the app stores in each country daily, US iPhone users have downloaded the top 10 apps of all time the most. The US dominated revenue earned for game downloads as well, apart from two games—Puzzle & Dragon and Monster Strike—where the Japanese spent the most. App Annie also said Apple’s Pages app is the only app on the list that doesn’t have a free version or in-app purchases (meaning it made all its revenue from people buying the app). Facebook-owned apps accounted for 40% of the most downloaded apps, a week after the company announced 1 billion people accessed the social network in a single day. Facebook also happens to be the only app in the top downloads chart that’s lasted since the initial launch of the App Store in 2008.

If you’re producing a casual game, a messaging app or a dating app for the next iPhone, you can hold out some hope that your app, like some of these enduring success stories, might just make it too:

Game downloads

GameRelease date
Candy Crush SagaNovember 2012
Fruit NinjaApril 2010
Angry BirdsDecember 2009
Subway SurfersMay 2012
Despicable MeJune 2013
Clash of ClansJune 2012
Temple RunAugust 2011
Angry Birds RioMarch 2011
Temple Run 2January 2013
Words With FriendsJuly 2009

App downloads

AppRelease date
FacebookJuly 2008
Facebook MessengerAugust 2011
YouTubeSeptember 2012
InstagramOctober 2010
SkypeMarch 2009
WhatsAppMay 2009
Find My iPhoneJune 2010
Google MapsDecember 2012
TwitterOctober 2009
iTunes UJanuary 2012

Games by revenue

GameRelease date
Clash of ClansJune 2012
Candy Crush SagaNovember 2012
Puzzle & DragonsFebruary 2012
Game of War — Fire AgeJuly 2013
Monster StrikeSeptember 2013
Hay DayJune 2012
Boom BeachMarch 2014
SlotomaniaNovember 2011
Big Fish CasinoAugust 2012
The Simpsons: Tapped OutFebruary 2012

Apps by revenue

AppRelease date
PandoraJuly 2008
LINEJune 2011
ZooskJanuary 2010
PagesApril 2010
SpotifyJuly 2011
BadooNovember 2010
SkypeMarch 2009
MLB.com At BatOctober 2008
GrindrMarch 2009
LINE PLAYNovember 2012

Correction (Sept. 4): An earlier version of this post said that Japanese users accounted for the most revenue earned for game downloads, when in fact they account for most revenue for just those two of the top ten games, Puzzle & Dragon and Monster Strike.

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