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STORE INTELLIGENCE · RANDY NELSON · MARCH 2016

Sensor Tower’s iOS App Leaders for February 2016

Facebook's newly acquired photo app overtook Snapchat worldwide, TurboTax out-earned Hulu, and more insights from February's top charts.

iOS App Leaders February 2016 Hero Image

Facebook liked one of last month's most downloaded apps so much, it bought it. In this edition of iOS App Leaders, we'll rank February 2016's top non-gaming apps by installs and revenue, as determined by estimates from Sensor Tower's Store Intelligence platform. Read on to learn which apps emerged as ones to watch on the App Store—and which ones lost traction over January.

Top Downloads: However Briefly, MSQRD Crashed Snapchat's Party

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iOS Top App Downloads United States February 2016

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iOS Top App Downloads Worldwide February 2016

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Click the charts above to view larger versions.

In the world of photo/video messaging apps, Snapchat has been oft-challenged but rarely beaten in terms of downloads. Its unbeaten streak was broken last month on the worldwide chart, where our data shows it falling to the upstart MSQRD from Belarus-based publisher Masquerade. The app, bought by Facebook last week just three months after it launched, enables users to place 3D masks on their faces in real time while snapping photos and making videos. The app gained global attention after it was used by celebrities during the 88th Academy Awards last month, and was later demoed by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg during his announcement of it acquisition. Its download growth on iOS and Android since launching in December 2015 can be seen in the chart below:

MSQRD Downloads Chart

MSQRD ranked fifth overall on our worldwide top apps by downloads chart—an improvement of 54 positions from January—while it came in eighth overall in the United States. However, it wasn't the only imaging app to beat Snapchat in downloads. China's Faceu ranked third overall in worldwide downloads, two positions above MSQRD on our chart. It had ranked 13th overall in January.

Top Revenue: Streaming Apps Dominate Overall, But Tax Prep Takes One of Them Down a Notch

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iOS Top App Revenue United States February 2016

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iOS Top App Revenue Worldwide February 2016

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Click the charts above to view larger versions.

Six of the top 10 non-gaming apps by revenue last month in the United States were from entertainment streaming services, compared to four in February 2015. Worldwide, there were five in the top 10, compared to three the year before. In the U.S., they accounted for four of the top five; the fifth spot went to Intuit's TurboTax, which actually out-earned Hulu in terms of in-app revenue in both the U.S. and worldwide for February. TurboTax's history of impressive year-over-year revenue growth during tax time can be see in the chart below:

Tax Apps Revenue Chart

The other standout of February app revenue was Netflix, which has been steadily climbing both the U.S. and worldwide in-app earnings charts since enabling subscriptions through its app last fall. The app retained its fourth-highest-grossing spot in the U.S. last month, but managed to climb two positions worldwide to end February as the world's second-highest-grossing non-gaming app. Pandora, which held that position in January, dropped one spot to No. 3 for February worldwide revenue.

Note: The revenue estimates displayed on our charts are net amounts, i.e., the amount paid to publishers by Apple after its 30 percent portion of their revenue has been deducted.

Join Us Next Month

We'll be back with our analysis of March's non-gaming iOS app download and revenue estimates this time next month. In the meantime, let us hear your feedback on these charts by tweeting @SensorTower or emailing randy@sensortower.com.


Sensor Tower's platform is an enterprise-level offering. Interested in learning more?


Randy Nelson

Written by: Randy Nelson, Head of Mobile Insights

Date: March 2016

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