Holidays are a perfect time to catch up with family and friends, snuggle up with a loved one, or play on your phone instead of listening to your aunt ask why you don’t have kids yet. While the world was decking the halls, opening presents and the like, a whole lot of consumers were downloading apps onto their mobile devices. Each year, data firm, SensorTower analyzes which apps perform the best from December 24 through 26, and it looks like Auntie was nagging more than usual, because app revenue grew 52 percent over 2015.

Global app revenue reached a whopping half billion dollars over Christmas, with approximately 87 percent ($439 million) generated by mobile games. In fact, the top five grossing apps on Christmas were all games. Mobile game gross revenue grew 52 percent over the same period in 2015.

The top five grossing mobile apps between December 24 and 26 were:

  1. Supercell’s Clash Royale
  2. Mixi’s Monster Strike
  3. Supercell’s Clash of Clans
  4. Niantic’s Pokémon GO
  5. Sony’s Fate/Grand Order

In the US, gross revenue for both the App Store and Google Play grew compared to the 2015 period, but Google Play outperformed Apple’s store at 66 percent versus 18 percent growth, SensorTower reported. US App Store gross revenue grew 18 percent year-over-year from approximately $83 million to $98 million. Google Play’s US gross revenue increased from approximately $38 million to $63 million, or about 66 percent.


Non-game gross revenue grew 48 percent to $61.2 million, compared to $41.3 million one year earlier. The top five grossing non-game apps worldwide were:

  1. LINE
  2. Netflix
  3. Tinder
  4. HBO NOW
  5. Pandora

Spotify, 2015’s top grossing non-game app dropped to number six this year. The top five apps reveal a trend for increased downloads of streaming video and music apps on major holidays. “As for Tinder, we can only assume that consumers turned to the convenience of the app to avoid spending the holidays alone,” noted SensorTower, “or perhaps to get a head start on a New Year’s resolution to find someone special in 2017.”