Distimo: Angry Birds Was 2011's Most Downloaded App. And The Fourth... And the Seventh.
Rovio's Angry Birds might just be a little less furious today, after it was announced that games featuring the furious fliers were three of the top 10 most downloaded apps in 2011.
According to mobile analytics firm Distimo and their annual app store report, the massively popular catapult game was by far 2011's most popular mobile application across all platforms.
The apoplectic avians appeared on every major phone platform in 2011, in three separate games: Angry Birds, Angry Birds Rio and Angry Birds Seasons.
They were found to have topped the charts after an analysis of the growth, revenue and trends in mobile apps over the past 12 months.
Facebook was the second most popular app, and Skype was third. Google Maps was the fourth-most downloaded app, and Apple's iBooks was fifth.
Fruit Ninja, a swipe-and-slash game by Halfbrick Studios was the eighth most popular app, and Talking Tom Cat by Outfit7 was ninth. The list was rounded-out by Twitter's native application.
Distimo's report also analysed the growth of app stores on several platforms, and found that Apple's App Store still far out-performed Google's Android Market Place.
The separate App Stores for the iPhone and the iPad both generated more revenue than Google's equivalent. The iPhone store alone produced four times as much revenue as the Android store.
"Apple seems to do very well at encouraging developers to make apps people are prepared to pay for," said Stuart Miles from the UK tech news blog Pocket Lint. "And when you look at Android apps you tend to find the majority of them are free."
"In their mind Android haven't paid for the OS on their phone because they've been told that it's free - and they don't expect to have to pay for apps either.
There is still a gap in quality between the best apps on Android and the Apple platforms, Miles argues - and until that changes Apple is likely to pull further ahead.
"One of the top apps in the Android store is a keyboard," he explains. "Which is great for companies that make keyboard apps, but it shows you what the quality of apps on Android is like."
The Nokia Ovi store and the BlackBerry App World store still trailed Apple and Google, as did Windows Phone 7's built-in app marketplace.
Almost half of the revenue in all app stores was gathered by so-called 'freemium' apps, the report said, in which advertising or in-app payments replace an up-front fee.
The proportion was even higher in the Google Android Market where 65% of the revenue came from freemium apps.
The report also noted that much of Apple's growth in 2011 came from new markets, including China where downloads grew by 30% over the last 12 months. In fact the amount of downloads in Apple's store gradually declined for most of 2011 until the launh of the latest iPhone in October, when it jumped bac to an all-time high.
There are also some spectres on Apple's horizon. Windows Phone 7 Marketplace showed the largest relative jump of all stores with 400% growth - although it basically had a standing start.
More than 1m apps can be found across the seven major app stores - 500,000 of which appear in Apple's iPhone App Store alone.