Although 2022 was a year in recession for many categories of mobile, overall downloads remained strong.
With Sensor Tower’s latest data offering an impressive 142bn total downloads across all categories for the Google Play and iOS App Store. Google remained top with 109.9bn with Apple being runner up with 32.2bn.
The top game worldwide was Subway Surfers, at roughly 292m installs.
Sensor Tower’s report also drew in some key insights for the mobile game market specifically. Noting that Fall Guys clone Stumble Guys was the third-most downloaded game at 184m installs, coming behind battle-royale game Garena Free Fire and mega-hit Subway Surfers. It was also the fastest-growing app and fastest-growing game in 2022, an impressive move for a relatively simple game.
That Stumble Guys continues to dominate app stores and becomes an increasing missed opportunity for Fall Guys owner Epic Games, does at least present them with an opportunity that they may chose to act upon in the future.
While the general games slump may be somewhat concerning, we’ve known for a while that the mobile game market is in a comedown from its pandemic peak and a -0.9% decrease is not exactly cause for panic. With macroeconomic circumstances being as they are, with projected recessions in the UK and post-covid shockwaves in China, it shouldn’t be unexpected that a relative luxury like mobile games may slip.
Social media apps meanwhile have continued to dominate popular culture with the advent of TikTok being the biggest boost to the category. Social therefore remains one of the top-performing categories.
Overall though the data only confirms that mobile games have a massive reach. Even with a recession there seems to be as many indications that the number of installs will remain strong throughout. Certainly there is also something to be said for longevity with Subway Surfers reaching its tenth year in 2022 and still remaining the most popular mobile game.
These number only confirm that Miniclip's acquisition of Sybo, one of the biggest stories of 2022 for us, is increasingly paying off.