App downloads hit record 1.76 billion over holiday week

The final week of 2012 was a big one for mobile app makers as consumers downloaded a record 1.76 billion apps between Christmas and New Year’s Eve, according to new data from Flurry. It’s not surprising that app downloads set a new weekly record, considering mobile usage is only going up and Christmas 2012 already set a single-day record for downloads. 

App downloads, Flurry

But the figure is still impressive and shows just how fast the app market is growing. Last year, over the same period, Dec. 25 – 31, Flurry estimated there were 1.2 billion apps downloaded. By December 2012, the average one-week download tally had already risen to 1.07 billion. So app downloads over the holiday week grew by 65 percent over the weekly December baseline, which itself was close to eclipsing last week’s record for most downloads in a week.

Flurry also estimated there were 50 million iOS (s aapl) and Android (s goog) devices activated over the last week of 2012. As we wrote earlier, the big growth in Christmas device activations was in tablets, which for the first time eclipsed daily smartphone activations. I suspect that the holiday week download numbers also reflected a rise in tablet app downloads as well, which is good news for developers who are targeting those devices.


Flurry, which pulls its data from 260,000 iOS and Android apps that run its analytics and advertising software, said the U.S. led the way with 604 million downloads, or 34.3 percent, followed by China, the U.K. and Germany. For 2013, Flurry expects the 1 billion weekly download mark to be the norm. And at this pace, we should also easily get to 2 billion weekly downloads at some point soon.