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The top-10 apps of 2018 according to usage data

6 months ago by Joshua Fruhlinger in Facts, Features

2018 was arguably the biggest year yet for apps, especially those of the social media and gaming ilk. Billions of people spend hours per day buried in apps and, despite concerns about private data sharing, Facebook ($NASDAQ:FB) login remains a popular way for people to log-in to their favorite apps. In fact, almost all of the world's most-popular apps include a Facebook login option, and users continue to use it.

So, with that, we take a look at the 10 most-popular apps of 2018 via Facebook login. Quick takeaways: Pinterest is huge, Spotify is huger, and people love their Candy Crush.

#10: Farm Heroes Saga

This "match three" style game from Activision's ($NASDAQ:ATVI) King is one of three of its kind in the top-10 for 2018.

They're all pretty much the same game, but because they time out and ask for money in order to continue, addicted gamers tend to cycle through all of them. And, for that reason, Farm Heroes Saga slipped into 2018's top-10 at spot number 10. Its ranking trend is in the downward direction, however, a possible sign that people are finally, almost, ready to get off the treadmill.

#9: TripAdvisor

When we're not vacationing, we're thinking about vacationing. It is thus not a major surprise that TripAdvisor ($NASDAQ:TRIP) is a monthly top-10 app.

In our case, it was the 9th most-popular app of 2018. TripAdvisor's popularity throughout the year has held firm despite a summer dip that was caused by the app temporarily disconnecting from Facebook in the wake of the privacy controversy. But, Facebook login is back and TripAdvisor's popularity is as big as ever.

#8: Airbnb

Speaking of vacations, Airbnb ($AIRBNB) has changed the way travelers think about lodging.

Airbnb, the "room-share" app that's doing to the hotel industry what Uber did to the taxi industry, continues to be as popular as ever, despite a bit of a usage slump in the summer. Expect Airbnb to become even more popular as it sorts out quality control, local legislation, and an IPO.

#7: Candy Crush Soda Saga

Another King / Activision ($NASDAQ:ATVI) "match-three" game, Candy Crush Soda Saga uses soda as its objects of obsession instead of farm animals. Coming in at #7 of 10 with an average monthly active users rank of 21.17, this game continues to suck up time for bored commuters.

#6: YouTube

If Uber disrupted the taxi industry while Airbnb disrupted hotels, Google's ($NASDAQ:GOOG) YouTube has certainly changed the way people watch video.

While YouTube isn't alone in this (Netflix certainly had a lot to do with how we've changed our TV-watching), it has changed the way celebrity is created and how companies buy video ad time. Meanwhile, YouTube's top stars are commanding as much — if not more — money than those from Hollywood. Taking spot #6 of the most-popular apps of 2018, YouTube appears to be here to stay. For now.

#5: Wish

Wish ($WISH), a resale marketplace, has picked up where CraigsList left off, claims over 300 million users across the world. It also claims to be the sixth-largest shopping site in the world. If its popularity via Facebook login is any indication, we'd say they're right about their numbers.

Despite some inner turmoil and growing pains, Wish appears well-positioned to take on big players like eBay in 2019.

#4: Tinder

Tinder, Match's ($NASDAQ:MTCH) most-popular dating platform, has become synonymous with dating apps, swiping for love, hookups, and all that. Despite all of that, it popularity seems to have peaked in the summer of 2018. It saw an unusual dip in usership during the winter "cuffing season" that's usually good for dating apps as well.

While Tinder's time certainly isn't up — it came in at the fourth-most popular app of 2018, after all — single people just may be ready to see someone else.

#3: Candy Crush Saga

If 2018 becomes known as the year in which the end began, we will at least know what people were doing that year. At #3 of top, Activision's ($NASDAQ:ATVI) Candy Crush Saga.

#2: Pinterest

For all the love that Tinder has lost, "discovery app" Pinterest ($PINTEREST) has gained.

The image-and-idea-focused social network has had a stellar 2018 in terms of user rankings, and finished the year in spot #2 with an average rank of 4.71. In fact, it topped user ranks during the summer and fall months consistently, beating out typical leaders of the pack.

#1: Spotify

Music-streaming app, service, platform, network — call it what you want — Spotify ($NYSE:SPOT) has become the dominant music-listening platform in the wake of massive upheavals in the record industry.

The company began the year by going public and hasn't looked back since. Always innovating, there's little question that Spotify will be looking to grow beyond a simple music-listening app in 2019.

Until then, however, it's the most-used app when it comes to Facebook login.

The full list with average monthly users rank for 2018

Name

Monthly Active Users Rank (Average)

Spotify

3.93

Pinterest

4.71

Candy Crush Saga

6.00

Tinder

8.19

Wish

14.06

YouTube

18.75

Candy Crush Soda Saga

21.17

Airbnb

21.38

TripAdvisor

31.31

Farm Heroes Saga

32.19

[Thinknum subscribers can find the full list here]

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Joshua Fruhlinger

Joshua has been writing about technology, lifestyle, and business for over 20 years. He's one of the original writers and editors for Engadget, and still writes a...

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