HBO Max broke Apptopia’s list of the 10 most downloaded apps of 2021 in the US, while Netflix and Disney + fell from the annual list.
The WarnerMedia service recorded 45 million downloads between December 21, 2020 and December 20, 2021, according to the ranking, ranking 10th. YouTube had 47 million downloads, ranking ninth for the year. (See full chart below.)
AT&T, parent of WarnerMedia, reported 45.2 million total subscribers to HBO and HBO Max as of Sept. 30, but each account can support multiple mobile app downloads. While most streaming is on smart TVs or connected TVs rather than mobile devices, the download data offers at least some direction as to the position of a service.
Globally, the broadcast had no presence in Apptopia’s top 10, with TikTok repeating at number one. With 656 million downloads, the app was way ahead of the second global giveaway, Instagram, which had 545 million. TikTok was also a leader in the US, with 94 million.
Similar to Sensor Tower and App Annie, Apptopia tracks downloads, that is, net new installs of an app on a mobile device, usually a phone, via Apple and Google. In China, only Apple’s iOS is counted. Subscription apps require a payment for a download to take place, although they can be authenticated using a paid subscription on another platform.
HBO Max launched in May 2020, but struggled to gain traction until the end of last year. Once it gained distribution on Amazon and Roku and also began releasing Warner Bros movies as they hit theaters, its numbers began to improve. Two more benchmarks came last summer, when HBO Max expanded outside of the US and also introduced a cheaper, ad-supported subscription tier.
In the Apptopia 2020 US Download Rankings, Disney + ranked 8th with 45 million, and Netflix was No. 10 with 44.7 million.
Overall, Netflix continues to lead all streaming services with 214 million subscribers, though its growth in the US has stalled in recent quarters. In November, Disney reported 118.1 million Disney + subscribers, though the service’s red-hot start two years ago has cooled off recently.
Here is the American graph from Apptopia in 2021: