If you think that the apps market is on the decline, think again. A new report app from analytics firm App Annie says that the revenue paid out to publishers from Google Play and the iOS App store grew by 40% from 2015 to 2016.

Within the same period, the report also stated that worldwide downloads grew 15% while time spent in apps grew by 25%.

2016 marked a year of major market shifts in the app ecosystem with China becoming the largest country in terms of iOS app store revenue. While mature markets experienced strong growth in 2016, emerging markets, including India, Indonesia, Mexico and Brazil, saw even more impressive gains.


Gaming continued to drive the majority of app store revenue and one of the biggest headlines of 2016 was the phenomenal success of Pokémon GO. Despite launching in July, it remained in the top five apps for worldwide revenue in the last week of the year. And the year ended with the release of the much anticipated Super Mario Run, which became the #1 app in 148 countries.

Although users spend the largest amount of their time in apps in messaging and social, a variety of other categories — from shopping to video streaming to travel — continue to gain on share of time as apps become an ever growing part of our daily lives. The chart below shows that the average consumer typically uses a large number of apps — well over 30 per month — across a number of key markets. China, where Tencent’s dominant WeChat messaging app delivers a broad platform of services, still leads on this metric — demonstrating users’ appetites to regularly engage with a large and diverse set of apps.

The report concludes that 2017 is set to be another banner year for the app ecosystem. “As technology and business models continue to evolve, apps will play an even greater role in transforming, disrupting and creating opportunities for companies and industries both old and new.”