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Google tops app downloads, knocking off Facebook again

Filed on January 16, 2020
Google tops app downloads, knocking off Facebook again
Google amassed close to 850 million downloads compared to Facebook's nearly 800 million in the fourth quarter.


US-based search engine giant Google has, for the first time in five years, unseated Facebook as the top publisher of mobile apps.

In the last quarter of 2019, Google amassed close to 850 million downloads compared to Facebook's nearly 800 million, analytics firm Sensor Tower revealed recently. When it comes to overall downloads for the year, however, Google still trails Facebook.

While Google raked in nearly 2.3 billion downloads, Facebook gained almost three billion downloads over the past 12 months.

As Facebook owns four out of the top five most downloaded apps worldwide - including WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram and Messenger - that does not come as a surprise.

ByteDance-owned video sharing app TikTok was the world's second most downloaded app in 2019. The figures show that TikTok downloads reached an all-time high in the fourth quarter of 2019, with nearly 220 million installs, which represented a 24 per cent increase over the third quarter.

Sensor Tower also reports that TikTok's revenue grew by a massive 540 per cent year-on-year in the fourt quarter.

Additionally, Disney+ was downloaded more than 30 million times in the fourth quarter 2019 in the US, which is more than double of its next nearest competitor, TikTok.

In terms of revenue, Disney+ grossed more than $50 million in its first 30 days, beating out other subscription video on demand rivals, like HBO NOW and Showtime.

Meanwhile, Google Play has now stopped showing notifications for updated apps. This came to light in the end of 2019 when users started noticing that it was sending fewer notifications.

Some users considered the lack of notifications as a temporary bug but it turned out that this was a planned initiative and was recently confirmed by Google representatives, GSMArena reported.

Apparently, this development has been live since November for some users on version 17.4 of the Google Play. In a test on version 18.3.13 no notifications were received following several app updates. This was done through the manual update route and from what it seems the same applies to users who have auto-updates turned on, the report added.

For users who have the auto-update feature turned on, the Google Play would typically update a handful of apps that had pending updates whenever you plugged into a charger.

This notification didn't serve much of a purpose beyond the partial list, but it was handy to have so you could expect changes of some sort, according to 9to5Google.


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