A recent Nielsen study reveals that Facebook is the top mobile app of 2013. Also on the list are other social networking apps like Twitter and Instagram. Google dominates the top 10 list, however, and is the number one U.S. web brand for the year.
The year 2013 can be remembered for the increase in paranoia over digital spying and snooping, with the Edward Snowden leaks and the NSA keeping tabs on everything that everyone does online. This will also be the year when Facebook will be remembered for its increased mobile efforts.
This year, Facebook launched Home, an app intended to replace the Android home screen. The social network also revamped its Messenger app, intending to improve user discovery through the use of mobile numbers. Home did not perform as well as intended, but it seems Facebook is finally getting mobile right.
In fact, for 2013, Facebook is the most popular mobile app, according to a recently-published study by Nielsen. The app had an average of 103 million unique users, with a 27 percent growth from 2012. The top 10 mobile apps this year also include Instagram at #7 position. Now owned by Facebook, the mobile-first app has 31.9 million average unique users.
However, it’s Google that dominates the top 10, with five mobile apps included in the list. These are Google Search, Google Play, YouTube, Google Maps and Gmail. Twitter holds the #10 spot.
Interestingly, Nielsen included Google Play in its list of applications, while its iOS counterpart, the iTunes App Store, comes pre-installed with all of Apple’s iOs devices.
According to Nielsen’s study, 65 percent of mobile phone users in the US have smartphones, and 29 percent of US households have tablets, which equates to about 33 million households in the country. The current market for tablet computers might be understated, however, as a recent PEW Internet study estimates this at about 80 million tablets across American households (perhaps accounting for households with more than one device).
These smartphone and tablet figures are not likely to remain static, however. With the holiday season — and holiday shopping — in full force, consumers are likely to get their hands on new devices this year end: smartphones, tablets and console gaming systems.