The Most Popular Apps Across the Globe in 2015

The Most Popular Apps Across the Globe in 2015

by Rae Steinbach

By 2015, there were over 2 billion smartphone users worldwide. With mobile application stores, such as the Apple Store and Google Play providing easy access to apps both for smartphones and other mobile devices, it comes as no surprise that app downloads across the world numbered over 180 billion.

The question then emerges from this number: What are most people downloading? Well, the answer changes country to country. Though we’re all connected by the usual culprits (e.g. Facebook), a few regional apps may surprise you. Check out the top apps in four different countries, based on aggregate downloads on the Apple Store and Google Play from 2015:

United States

1. Facebook Messenger

Facebook Messenger

The direct messaging companion to the Facebook platform consistently ranked #1 in the U.S. on both Android and iOS in the Social Networking Category. Its overall success as the top app is due to its status at #1 in overall app downloads in Google Play and it’s #2 status in the App Store. As of January 1, 2016, this app is still going strong in both app stores.



Let the millennials complain that Facebook isn’t like it used to be, but this app’s consistency among the most highly rated means someone is still using it – even if it is your grandmother and all of her friends from the Stone Age.



Despite a more tumultuous ranking in the Apple Store, Pandora maintained its #1 slot in Google Play in the Music & Audio Category, securing its spot at #3 most popular overall in the U.S. Still, iOS users seem to maintain their reluctance, with the app ranking at #17 in the Apple Store leading into the new year.

4. Instagram


Though it enjoyed consistent success in the Photo & Video category, it’s overall ranking in the App Store was highly varied, reaching an overall low of 13 in mid-November. Foodies fear not, however, as on the Android platform it enjoyed consistent success and for iOS has also made a comeback to rank within the top 5.



Don’t get too into the hype that Snapchat is in the midst of its demise. This app is looking like it’s here to stay, despite its mercurial performance in the App Store. This is great news for your morning commute, where watching people take ridiculous selfies will continue to be a form of entertainment.



1. iQiyi


iQiyi is the leading, streaming video service in China that that prides itself on its high-quality, fully-licensed material. The app’s consistent success on the App Store drove it to #1 overall, though it has since seen a decline into 2016.

2. Taobao


Consistently the #1 Shopping app on the App Store, the e-commerce giant Taobao maintains its powerful status as #2 overall in Chinese app downloads, portraying the mass consumer culture that continues to grow in the region.

3. QQ

QQ App Icon

Boasting over 800 million users by the end of 2014, QQ can be considered an official social messaging app of China. It’s consistent performance for iOS devices is unlike most other apps in this list and signifies its staying power.

4. Alipay


As the top finance application in China, Alipay is the mobile wallet of choice for a population that numbers over 1 billion people. Equally helpful to this app’s success is that it is a branch of the Alibaba company, an e-commerce site that is considered by many to currently be the most powerful in the world in its industry.

5. Jingdong


Jingdong is a company focused on direct online sales from businesses to consumers. Its exponential growth since its debut in 2004 has contributed to its recent success in overall app downloads, ranking consistently as #2 in the category of Shopping.



1. WhatsApp


There’s no denying the popularity of this social networking app in India. It has consistently ranked #1 both in the Social Networking category and overall in both the App Store and Google Play.

2. Facebook


Unlike in other countries where app rankings highly vary, Facebook’s consistency as #2 in both overall and the Social Networking category proves the unique stability of app downloads in India.

3. Facebook Messenger

Facebook Messenger

Though for iOS, Messenger often ranked #5 overall, it surged ahead on Android devices, averaging to the #3 spot. Still, its rank stability, like the other apps on this list, continues to be a defining trend of India’s app downloads.

4. SHAREit


In the category of Productivity (Apple Store) and Tools (Google Play), nothing competes with SHAREit, a file-sharing app that works across platforms and devices. The app’s appeal is its incredible speed (up to 200x faster than Bluetooth) and ability to share larger file sizes.

5. YouTube


The streaming video platform enjoyed the #1 spot in the Photo & Video category on the Apple Store, helping to boost it to #5 overall. It’s not too surprising that the appeal of on-demand movie trailers and music videos is a global phenomenon.


United Kingdom

1. I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here!


Don’t expect to see this app maintaining its #1 spot into 2016: it’s success was short-lived as the companion app to the popular television show by the same name. However, since early December 2015, it has dropped out of the top 100 of overall app downloads. What we can learn from its brief stint of popularity, however, is the UK is a country that really, really enjoys seeing their stars stranded.

2. WhatsApp


Similar to India, this social networking app enjoys immense popularity across both iOS and Android devices in the UK. Clearly, the United States and China are missing something on not joining the bandwagon of this messaging platform.

3. Call From Santa!

Call from Santa

In the Entertainment category, nothing could beat this holiday-themed app in the UK. Since Christmas, though, the hype has died down and like I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here! don’t expect to see this app remain even in the top 50 of overall downloads. Still, having Santa’s real voice on the other end of the line is a pretty awesome experience.

4. Facebook Messenger

Facebook Messenger

Messenger has enjoyed consistent popularity as the #2 Social Networking app both in the App Store and Google Play. Similarly, it is ranked #4 overall in both app stores, with a high likelihood of remaining so through 2016.

5. The X Factor UK

Xfactor UK

The popularity of this companion app that lets the user act as a 5th judge to the televised talent competition is highly inconsistent. Just like Call From Santa! and I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here! the app saw a slide in popularity since the end of December, 2015.

However, even during its peak period, it ranged on the App Store from #3 overall to below #500. Somehow, math did a thing and it averaged to #5 overall for the period of November, 2015.

Internationally, the trend for the most popular app downloads were in the categories of Social Networking and Productivity. What the world has in common is the desire to interact, whether that be within the country or across borders.

This post complements of fueled.com, Award Winning Mobile Design and Development.


Posted in: Mobile Development

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Apple Watch – Invest or Wait?

Apple Watch – Invest or Wait? - By Li Huang

Apple Watch

The Apple Watch. It will look elegant on your wrist without necessarily breaking the bank. So does consumer wisdom beckon you to buy or bench?

In the modern realm of technology that updates itself at a relentless pace, from smartwatches to Apple TVs, we consumers need a tool to guide us to the right price and best version of a product for our individual needs. This tool is an invisible magnifying glass that provides us with instant in-depth information on an item, and not having that tool at our disposal is a big reason why we think twice before purchasing a tech product.

There was a point in time when consumers would pounce on a new tech product without question. Some decades preceding, people would flock to stores with mob mentality at the release of new technology. I remember a time when people never doubted the Walkman and large groups would practically empty store shelves of PS2s. The unspoken prestige of first-generation technology would become shaken as the millennium dragged on. Whether we like to admit it or not, tech product skepticism now lingers in the minds of alert shoppers more than ever, and the Apple Watch is no exception.


Most people who leap on first-generation Apple products are early adopters, as evident in iPhone and iPad sales. However, the latest Apple product has shifted tides. It has garnered mainstream attention and craving in a manner that has the general population ready to pay out of the pocket for this technology, albeit its first-generation stigma.

When pondering whether or not to go through with the purchase of a tech product, form and function are integral in reaching the final decision. That being said, the Apple Watch features a rich vault of functions on a rounded square reminiscent of its elder iPhone sibling. It is easily the most capable and swag smartwatch to this day. Intriguing hardware and software both boast its visual appeal. A pearl to lay eyes on coupled with unique fonts, memorable graphics, and customizable watch faces make the Apple Watch seemingly irresistible to some. Aside from being able to get iPhone notifications on your watch, Apple raises the ceiling of communication for its new product by allowing users to receive calls and texts directly on their arm. Sloths rejoice! Just raise your wrist and start chatting. Moreover, the Apple Watch’s capacity to send drawings serves to raise the level of informality, fun, and hence welcoming familiarity.

Apple Watch also tracks daily movement patterns. Though far from substituting as a full-scale fitness device, it will give you a buzz if you’re rooted in a seat for extended periods of time and create a graph based on your activity levels. Instead of favoring bursts of heavy activity, this watch promotes the motto “slow and steady wins the race.” For the reasons above and many more, Apple Watch resolves many concerns, provides entertainment, and makes for a loyal companion.

Suppose you want to get super technical with your potential Apple Watch investment. Analyzing prices and anticipating how long you’re going to use the product before the next version release will give you some wind regarding the decision of buying now or waiting a bit longer. This wind happens to blow in the direction of investing. Apple Watch’s entry level model is $349. Considering that there are 365 days in a year and operating on the notion that a newer version of the watch will be released annually, the rate of return rounds out to about $1 per day for usage. If money is an obstacle, a combination of high quality and the owner’s preservation enables you to sell Apple products of previous versions and retain much of its value, making that $1 a day stand out even more.


The future is bright. This is not only a philosophy but  the underpinning of the tech market. The fact that technology is advancing at an astounding rate only benefits consumers as the law of supply and demand unfolds.

There will always be something better. On point with Apple, the first-generation of iPhones didn’t have 3G, GPS, or the famed  “App Store.” The first generation of iPods didn’t have a camera. When Mac computers first became available to the public, they lacked many features and ports that the current generations display. Don’t expect the first generation of Apple Watches to be perfect. Consider the history of initial product releases of Apple (and many other marketing giants) to be an experiment, with consumers suggestions and complaints the subject.

The cutting edge is bound to bleed some, weary or not. Glitches, hiccups, and miscellaneous flaws are bound to be frustrating, and as a sheep in the consumer flock, it will be some time before the herd is pacified. If you elect to wait it out, the standby time (a few weeks, a few months, a year) is dependent on market fluctuations and life circumstances. Just remember. You ultimately decide how long you are willing to ride it out without this watch.

The Final Tick

If you’re the type that firmly takes the future into account and stays true to optimism, you should wait until the release of its second version or beyond. However, if you’re sporadic when it comes to technology and/or the latest trend, Apple Watch’s formidable arsenal can erase all regret from making the investment. At the end of the day, it all comes down to your flair for the product. Spend or save, this watch makes you want to take a bite out of your wrist.

This post complements of fueled.com, Award Winning Mobile Design and Development.

Posted in: Apple Watch

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Phone in a New Name for an Old Timer

Apple iPhone


Phone in a new name for an old timer
By Li Huang

When’s the last time you made a call with your phone?

Can’t recall? You’re not alone. Many people on their phones are skimming through texts, shuffling through apps, taking photos, and recording footage. How often do you ever actually use your mobile device as a phone? Why is it even still called a phone? It’s like calling a car a horseless carriage. It’s outdated and silly.

Like many other aspects of life that originated before the turn of the millennium, phone calls have become less preferred, if not obsolete. Methods of communication have since expanded onto texting and video chatting formats on the computer. If you ask around, you’ll find that some even purposefully avoid picking up and let their callers leave messages on voicemail.

Avoiding the “phone” in smartphone isn’t a filthy habit… it’s just leaving the old, rusty bike in the garage for a new shiney, electric one. What’s debatable though is how we address these very intimate devices that fit so nicely in our palms.

There are many phrases that have managed to outlive their literal meaning.  We “type” but not on typewriters. We “rewind” things that weren’t unwound.  We listen to internet radio that doesn’t run on radio waves. We CC (Carbon copy) people on emails when there’s no carbon paper on our desks.

When we say that something is “run-of-the-mill,” it indicates that the subject is mundane. Similarly, “hold your horses” usually means to slow down. Mills certainly are not as commonplace as they used to be, and unless you’re father is Prince Charles you’re probably not riding horses too often. So why do we call the device that we carry around daily a “phone” when we don’t even use it to make calls anymore?

We shouldn’t. At least not at the moment. We are in a transitional phase in mobile tech history, where televisions are replaced with Apple TVs and where the “phone” as we now know it is shedding the skin of previous generations and leaving enough residue to undermine its definition. Maybe in 50 years human civilization will look back and anchor mobile devices with greater clarity or brand it with another term altogether. But as for now, we are still in the mold when it comes to whether we should call these mobile devices “phones” or otherwise.

So what exactly should we call these things that we carelessly carry around in our pockets day in, day out? The conforming mind would most likely always refer to it as a “phone” whereas those who are more liberal wouldn’t have a problem with different term. But hey, in a few decades, what we now call “phones” might be able to execute amazing feats such as supporting photorealistic games and substitute as a personalized med pack. What would they be called then?

Since they’re more like tiny computers or gadgets and stick to us more closely than some pets do, we should be calling our mobile devices/smartphones “Vices.” No, no. Not the “immoral” or “wicked” definition of the word. The other meaning. A substitute. As in “Vice President.” There is poetic justice in calling them Vices. Phones now substitute for many things we used to attribute to multiple devices. Moreover, we would call a previous significant other an “Ex” instead of an “Ex-girlfriend/Ex-boyfriend.” So why not abbreviate that which adheres to us both physically and psychologically into one catchy, finely honed term?

It’s official. Fueled has placed its stamp on the future coining of our “mobile devices.” They will be called Vices from now and on. Any disputes and complaints filed will be redirected to a waiting line longer than those of the DMV for screening.


Posted in: Apple iPhone, mLearning

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Do you need live instructor-led Dreamweaver Training? Register now for Online Adobe Dreamweaver Training with VHOT Training Inc.

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