TikTok and YouTube Among Top 10 Apps in Lifetime Consumer Spending

Olivia Song

November

2021

It’s official, there is no stopping the craze and popularity of TikTok anytime soon.

Since the pandemic, the Chinese video-sharing app quickly became the most popular free app in the world, entertaining millions of users around the world as they were stuck at home during the lockdown. Because of this, TikTok was even named as the third fastest-growing brand of 2020 by global data intelligence company Morning Consult.

Despite being banned in India and almost getting axed in the US by former President Donald Trump last year, TikTok still managed to claim the top spot as the world’s most downloaded app in 2020, surpassing Facebook for the first time ever. That’s not all, the video-sharing app owned by China-based tech company ByteDance has also proved itself to be a formidable force in terms of revenue after it was listed among the top 10 mobile apps in lifetime consumer spending.

According to a recent report by App Annie, TikTok rounded out the top five apps on the list, while fellow Chinese video streaming apps Tencent Video and iQiYi came in just one spot above and below respectively. Apart from these three apps and Japan’s Line, the remaining spots in the top ten were all dominated by American mobile apps. Based on the results that were gathered from both the Apple App’s Store and Google Play Store, the online dating app Tinder came in first for consumer spending, followed by Netflix and YouTube in the top three spots.

The report also highlighted YouTube’s achievement in surpassing US$3 billion (RM12.4 billion) in consumer spending worldwide on Apple’s iOS alone, as of October 2021. Upon combining the total revenue from iOS and Google Play, the Google-owned video streaming app easily claimed first place in consumer spending for live streaming apps. Thanks to its popularity among content creators, and its multiple paid membership channels and premium subscriptions like YouTube Music Premium, YouTube is living proof that consumers are willing to pay more to enjoy quality content that they value.

Unlike YouTube, TikTok is an app that does not come with a paid subscription plan, which makes its growing revenue even more impressive. Among the entertainment apps, the short-video sharing app was right behind YouTube in consumer spending worldwide, coming in second place with over US$2 billion (RM8.2 billion) from iOS and Google Play. In the third quarter of 2021, TikTok even managed to climb to the top spot, beating out YouTube and Tinder in consumer spending.

If you need a further indication of TikTok’s success, the platform was also among the top five apps with the most monthly active users globally. In fact, the company even revealed back in September 2021 that it has over 1 billion global active users, a figure that almost doubles the 507 million users it recorded in December 2019. And while that number may still be a far cry from Facebook’s total of 3.51 billion monthly active users across its platforms like Instagram and WhatsApp, one should never underestimate the potential of TikTok.

Just look at how many companies have tried to emulate TikTok’s formula by introducing their own version of short-video sharing features on their platform. From Instagram Reels to Snapchat Spotlight, and the latest addition of YouTube Shorts, it cannot be denied that everybody wants a piece of TikTok’s success. With the year almost coming to an end, we can only wait and see what 2022 has in store for TikTok, or rather, what it has in store for us.