Smartphones and tablets seem to be getting better–and cheaper–with each passing year. Most of them often receive hardware upgrades that put them at par with high-performance PCs and laptops that are normally reserved for extreme gaming, video editing, and heavy multitasking.
Without good software, however, high-performance hardware often goes to waste. Thankfully, software developers have been responding in kind, producing an assortment of useful apps for various mobile platforms. The most popular mobile apps usually fall into distinct categories across all major app stores, including Google’s Play Store and Apple’s App Store.
In this article, we skim through the most popular app stores for app categories with the most awesome apps as the year winds down.
On Google Play, educational apps form the bulk of the most popular applications designed for Android smartphones. These apps draw their popularity from the wide range of age groups they serve – from preschoolers to college students and beyond. Young kids can indulge in the Toca game series, Peek-a-boo Surprise, and Drawing for Kids, all of which have been downloaded more than a thousand times.
Apps such as Evernote, My Study Life, and EasyBib for iOS and Android have become popular with college students and other adult users. Apps like these are one of the reasons why 77 percent of students interviewed in a McGraw-Hill Education survey trust technology to help improve their grades.
Perhaps one of the biggest gainers from improved technology in 2016 is gaming. Like education apps, gaming apps cut across all age groups. Gaming apps are also the most popular app category on the App Store, making up over 24 percent of the 130 billion apps downloaded until summer of 2016.
Notable mentions here include Candy Crush Saga and Clash of Clans, which are some of the highest ‘grossing’ apps of all time on iOS, Windows Phone, and Android platforms.
Mobile devices have become extensions of our personal and professional lives. Apps like Microsoft Word, Adobe Reader, and OCR-enabled document converters such as Mobile Doc Scanner enable individuals to continue working remotely. The convenience and the ability to increase productivity are some of the reasons why business apps rank highly on all major app stores.
4. Tools and Utilities
Most major app stores are filled with apps that enable users to utilize their smartphones as practical utility tools. Because many phones come with a basic calculator or a flashlight, these tools and utilities add on to the functionality of the smartphone, which makes the phones more versatile for everyday use. Some tools in this category can even help recover your iOS device or Android smartphone or tablet when you lose it, which can be of great help in an extremely stressful situation. Others even help you find your way around a new neighborhood, thanks to GPS.
Utilities make up fewer than 5 percent of all apps on the App Store, while Google Play plays host to about 138,000 utility tools. The most popular tools in this category include antivirus applications such as Avast, Kaspersky Antivirus, and Avira Antivirus; unit converters, scientific calculators, security apps, and an assortment of other useful utilities.
This area is one of the fastest growing categories in mobile app development, with new apps coming out every other day. With all the negativity in the real world, entertainment apps help us to get away from it all – albeit temporarily. Power up Talking Tom Cat and let the Tom cat tickle your funny bone after a stressful day at work, or install Netflix to stream your favorite movie or TV series anywhere, anytime.
If you are a developer looking to capitalize on your talents, mobile platforms offer a fun way to realize your goals. Publishing an app in these popular categories gives you a real shot at digital fame and the ability to make a living out of your talents. While publishing on multiple app stores is often an uphill task for many developers, doing so increases your chances of making more sales faster and establishing your name across different platforms.
Featured photo credit: App Developer by Dashbook via venturebeat.com