Only 2 of the App Store's all-time most downloaded games feature in top grossing

Highlights download-revenue discrepancy

Only 2 of the App Store's all-time most downloaded games feature in top grossing

App Annie's latest report, entitled 'The Most Popular iPhone and iPad Apps of All Time', paints a predictable picture of the mobile games industry's current state of play.

Collecting games with the highest worldwide revenue and downloads since the App Store's inception, the resulting charts are unlikely to surprise anyone.

Supercell predictably dominates the revenue chart, with Clash of Clans taking 1st place, Hay Day and Boom Beach coming in 6th and 7th respectively. 

Candy Crush Saga is in at 2nd, and Puzzle & Dragons takes 3rd.

Downloads =/= Revenue

Few surprises in that line-up, then. What is interesting to note, however, is how little crossover there is between all-time revenue and downloads. 

Aside from Clash of Clans (6th most downloaded) and Candy Crush Saga (1st), no games from the all-time downloads chart also feature in the revenue chart.

Angry Birds, Fruit NinjaTemple Run and its sequel - all of these chart well in downloads but are notable absentees in the revenue chart.

And, by the same token, Puzzle & Dragons and Game of War: Fire Age - whose revenues are 3rd and 4th highest respectively - fail to make the top 10 for all-time downloads. 

There are a number of reasons for this. It being an all-time list, it covers a period from 2008 until now - a period in which the mobile landscape has shifted dramatically. A lot has been learned about effective monetisation between 2009's Angry Birds and 2014's Boom Beach, for example.

An all-time download chart is also naturally weighted in favour of older games, many of which don't have the lifespan or revenue potential of more modern free-to-play games.

8 of the 10 most downloaded were released in 2012 or earlier, with 5 out of 10 were released in the years up to and including 2011. 

You can download the full report via App Annie.

Features Editor

Matt is really bad at playing games, but hopefully a little better at writing about them. He's Features Editor for, and has also written for lesser publications such as IGN, VICE, and Paste Magazine.