Mobile games were the most downloaded app category across the App Store and Google Play.
Game downloads on the App Store reached 2.1 billion installs, a decrease of 8 per cent year-on-year.
In comparison, game downloads on Google Play exceeded 11.5 billion, a decrease of 2.6 per cent year-on-year.
Overall the most downloaded mobile game worldwide across both marketplaces for Q3 2021 was Tencent’s PUBG Mobile, which was spurred by the release of Battlegrounds India.
PUBG Mobile downloads suffered a decline following the removal of the game from India’s app marketplaces from Q3 2020 to Q2 2021. PUBG Mobile was last at the top of the global download charts in Q4 2018.
PUBG Mobile was followed by My Talking Angela 2 from Outfit7 and Garena Free Fire from Garena. Free Fire has remained in the top five mobile games for the past six quarters with India as its top market.
For the App Store, Pokémon Unite was the most downloaded mobile game, despite being released towards the end of the quarter on September 22nd, picking up 18 million downloads in nine days.
In comparison, on Google Play the most installed game globally released this quarter was My Talking Angela 2, which accumulated approximately 55 million downloads.
In the US, Pokémon Unite was the most downloaded game across both app marketplaces, exceeding 7 million installs. Over 85 per cent of its downloads were from the App Store, with only 15 per cent from Google Play.
Roblox has maintained its position in the top five games in the US since Q2 2020, with Q3 2021 being its best-ever position at number 2 for App Store downloads. This was spurred by in-game music experiences, such as virtual concerts from KSI and Twenty One Pilots.
For Google Play, hypercasual games dominated the top ten downloads, with eight hypercasual games in the top ten. Zynga owned Rollic Games’ Arrow Fest held the top spot this quarter, with two other Zynga hypercasual games in the top 20, Hair Challenge and Queen Bee.
Garena Free Fire has taken Fortnite’s place as the number one mobile shooter game in the US for Q3 2021, year-over-year.
The most downloaded game in Asia for the quarter was PUBG Mobile, which surpassed more than 200 per cent quarter-over-quarter growth in the region. This was spurred by the release of Battlegrounds Mobile in India, which if not included the game’s downloads only increase 2 per cent quarter-over-quarter.
On the App Store, Harry Potter: Magic Awakened, which was released in China on September 9th, reached almost nine million installs for the quarter, almost as many as Honor of Kings accumulated for the entire quarter.
For Google Play, PUBG Mobile was at the top of the charts with more than 45 million downloads, with over 36 million from India. The top genre in Asia was arcade, with five titles in the top 20 in this genre.
This quarter marks a year since the removal of Epic Games’ Fortnite from both marketplaces, which allowed other mobile shooters to fill its place.
The game that stepped into Fortnite’s shoes in the US was Garena Free Fire, which has reached third place for overall mobile game revenue in the country. Free Fire has had the best year ever by US revenue for a mobile shooter game.
Garena has not always performed well in the US, with a low adoption rate since its launch in August 2017. However, the game overcame this gap with much higher revenue per download, around $35, than competitors in the genre, such as Call of Duty Mobile or PUBG Mobile.
The shooter genre had three games in the top 15 for Q3 2021: Free Fire, COD Mobile and PUBG Mobile.
Garena recently launched Free Fire Max, a graphically enhanced version of Free Fire including new features at the end of Q3 2021, on September 28th.