Downloads of meeting apps soared in 2020 due to the impact of COVID-19 lockdowns, according to research group Airnow.

In the US, Zoom saw an increase of 72.3mln downloads (53mln Apple; 19.3mln Android), mobile game Among Us jumped by 38mln (28.7mln Apple; 9.3mln Android) while TikTok added 31.9mln downloads (27.6mln Apple; 4.3mln Android).

The pattern was similar in the UK with the largest yearly increase recorded by Zoom with 10.9mln downloads, Microsoft Teams and Among Us with a 7mln increase.

The data research predicts the pattern will be repeated going into 2021 with TikTok, Zoom, Among Us, and Instagram all expected to do well as new mobile phones and tablets given as presents are switched on the first time.

The period between December 24 and 31 is usually the busiest time for new devices to come online and to begin downloading apps.

“Every year, as newly gifted devices come online during the holiday vacation week, we see a mix of the current year’s hottest apps and expected standards – apps like Snapchat, Amazon Alexa, Instagram and YouTube – be downloaded to devices,” said Tim Armes, Airnow Data Client Services Director.

There’s typically at least one game in the annual top five, and with the need to adhere to social distancing recommendations, we expect Zoom will continue to be downloaded, even while employees may be enjoying vacation time.”

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