App Annie tipped entertainment and social apps as the categories which will reach the highest growth in 2022, while games designed for the increasingly hyped metaverse era are expected to also gain traction in the period.

In a report forecasting the landscape of the global apps market in the coming year, the app analytics company estimated revenue from purchases for entertainment apps to hit $12 billion, driven by video streaming subscriptions which recorded accelerated growth since the start of the Covid-19 (coronavirus) outbreak in early 2020.

App Annie expected social apps to hold the second top spot, growing to a $9 billion market on mobile in 2022, up 82 per cent from 2020 as consumers are expected to pay $4 billion more compared with their spending then.

“Rising stars” in the category include gaming app Discord, live video service Tagged and short video maker Likee.

In addition to revenue, social apps are set to take nearly half of all time spent on mobile devices.

A leader in the category, social media app TikTok, is tipped to hit more than 1.5 billion active users in the next year.

Into the metaverse
App Annie also forecast consumers to spend $3.1 billion in 2022 for so-called metaverse gaming apps.

The company believes “world-building functionalities that allow users to interact in real-time through their virtual avatars will captivate audiences and capture share of wallet”.

In the new immersive gaming sector, the role of mobile acts as “a linchpin form factor”, the report claimed.