Market Data

Q1 2023 Quarterly Recap: Consumers Spend 5.5 Hours on Mobile

Lexi Sydow’s latest rundown shows price sensitivity takes center stage for mobile-first consumers

New Year, Same Habits: Consumers Double Down on an App-Based Lifestyle

Time spent in the top 10 most-mobile markets hit 5.5 hours in Q1 2023, up from 5.4 hours in Q1 2022. Consumers in eight major markets now spend over five hours per day in apps, including Indonesia, Brazil and the US. 

And where their eyeballs are, the ad dollars follow, with. mobile advertising accounting for a $336 billion opportunity.

Download our Q1 2023 Rankings Report to uncover which apps are driving engagement:

Mobile App Downloads Show Consumers’ Appetites Favor a Budget

Our phones are our most personal devices and a leading indicator of how our habits are changing from environmental factors. In the face of high interest rates, macroeconomic headwinds and rising inflation, consumers are strapped for cash and looking for deals. As we enter into shaky economic territory in 2023, the apps in demand (by breakout downloads) are:

  • Secondhand Marketplaces Vinted (#4 by breakout downloads in the UK) allow consumers to buy cheaper goods or to make some extra cash selling their own items.
  • Fast-Fashion and Cheap GoodsSHEIN (#3 in the US & #4 in the UK by breakout downloads) and Temu (#1 in the US) use mobile-native techniques like incorporating social media interfaces, influencer-style marketing and gamification features
  • Budget Friendly Travel Fly Bonza (#2 in Australia), a mobile-only low-cost airline app and Hopper (#5 in the US, #9 in Singapore) for finding optimal priced times to fly appeal to price-sensitive consumers eager to travel.
  • Grocery and Food Deals and Rewards FairPrice (#1 by breakout downloads in Singapore) provides deals, exclusive discounts and extensive rewards for grocery and food delivery. CoffeeBean SG (#2 in Singapore) puts its loyalty and rewards program front-and-center as the main use case for on-the-go coffee seekers.

Apps: TikTok Dominates for Breakout App Store Spend as “Tipping” Content Creators Goes Mainstream

Despite lighter wallets, consumers are prioritizing entertainment. TikTok is a standout here, ranking #1 for breakout consumer spend in Q1 2023 YoY. TikTok was a universal favorite in the markets analyzed, ranking in all markets except for India (where the app is banned). TikTok was the #1 breakout app for app store spend in France, Germany, Indonesia, the UK and the US. And ranked #2 in Australia and Singapore, while ranking #3 in South Korea.

Other standout areas of growth include: 

  • Language Learning — Duolingo (#5 breakout app, globally) and Babbel ranked highly, with language learning subscriptions on the rise as consumers prioritize a year of travel.
  • Video Streaming HBO Max, Disney+, Paramount+, DAZN, and ESPN all rank highly for growth in subscriptions.
  • Comics & Anime — piccomaranked second only to TikTok for absolute growth worldwide in app store spend.LINE Manga andCrunchyrollranked highly in Japan and France, respectively.
  • Fitness Goals — Calorie counting apps ranked highly in Germany, the UK and the US as consumers sought to achieve their new year’s fitness goals with a bit of guidance and accountability through premium subscriptions.

Games: Longtime Favorites Capture Global Appeal, while Titles in Demand Vary by Market

In Q1 2023, familiar titles dominated the worldwide downloads rankings. Each country saw a unique list of games topping the charts. but  similarities emerged, including: 

  • Street Fighter: Duel is Crunchyroll’s debut mobile RPG game of the franchise, launching Feb 28, 2023, and immediately shot up the charts. The game was particularly popular with US consumers, with more than half of all downloads coming from the US.
  • Block Blast Adventure Master is the latest Puzzle game to pop in popularity. Originally debuted in 2022, the game by Hungry Studio has garnered wide appeal — ranking among the top games in Germany, Singapore, South Korea and Australia.

Gaming Dollars Migrate to Pockets of Growth in Mobile Gaming In-App Purchases

The first ever reduction in mobile games app store spend was in 2022 (down 5% YoY). We’re still seeing consumers strapped for cash, but there hasn’t been any further decline. Consumer spend in mobile games has remained relatively stable YoY 

We are seeing diversity in titles experiencing booms in revenue in Q1 2023, compared to the year prior. 

  • Gardenscapes — The popular title by Playrix accelerated their user acquisition (UA) in the latter part of 2022, driving a larger portion of paid ads in an effective strategy that also yielded an organic downloads boost. This UA tactic appears to have also driven a surge in in-app purchases from new and returning users.
  • Royal Match — Similar to Gardenscapes, Royal Match increased its paid downloads over 2x from December 2022 to January 2023. Royal Match has a large global footprint, but the US remains the #1 market for downloads and consumer spend. The $1.99 mini coin package was the most popular iPhone purchase in the US, representing over 40% of all in-app purchases in Q1 2023. 
  • FIFA — Off the back of the men’s FIFA 2022 World Cup, soccer fervor remained high in Q1 2023 with the 2023 updated season. Electronic Arts’ FIFA Soccer made India, Indonesia and Singapore (in addition to FIFA Mobile in South Korea) breakaway leaders in consumer spend growth.

Download’s Full Q1 2023 Quarterly Ranking Report:

To find out more about the most popular apps and games of Q1 2023 – and their relative performance per regional market – read’s Q1 2023 Mobile Pulse Top Apps and Games Rankings report now.


  • Top apps and games by critical performance metrics, including downloads, consumer spend and monthly active users.
  • The movers and shakers showing up as breakout apps and games by downloads, spend and MAU.
  • A global view of chart-topping apps and games of Q1 2023 across 19 markets and three regions.

Click here to read the report:


DISCLAIMER: is a mobile market estimate service provider. is not registered in any investment advisory capacity in any jurisdiction globally, and does not offer any legal, financial, investment or business advice. Nothing contained in this communication, or in any products, services, communications, or other offerings, should be construed as an offer, recommendation, or solicitation to buy or sell any security or investment, or to make any investment decisions. Any reference to past or potential performance is not, and should not, be construed as a recommendation or as a guarantee of any specific outcome. You should always consult your own professional legal, financial, investment and business advisors. Additionally, by providing the information herein, does not make any representations or warranties and does not undertake any legal or contractual obligations whatsoever. No liability may accrue to as a result of providing this information to you.

April 19, 2023

Market Data

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