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20+ Popular Mobile Applications: What Makes Them Successful?


Mobile applications are expected to generate over $935 billion in revenue by 2023.


There’s no question that mobile applications are big business. A recent study by Flurry showed that mobile app usage has surpassed desktop usage for the first time. As a result, businesses are increasingly looking to create their mobile aplications to capitalize on this trend. However, with so many apps available on the market, it can be difficult to create a successful app that stands out from the crowd.

So take some time today, after reading through our article on some amazing brands with intriguing apps- consider whether your company needs an upgrade or not?

So, what makes successful mobile applications?

There are several factors that contribute to the success of the mobile applications. First and foremost, the app must provide value to the user. It should offer something unique that users can’t find in other apps. Additionally, the app must be well-designed and easy to use. Finally, a successful app must be marketed effectively and promoted to potential users to gain traction and build a user base.

Some examples of award-winning mobile applications that have successfully achieved these goals include Instagram, Snapchat, Uber, and many others. For example, the photo-sharing app Instagram has been enormously popular since its launch in 2010. Its clean design, easy-to-use interface, and unique filters have made it a favorite among users. Similarly, Snapchat has become one of the most popular messaging apps thanks to its unique features, such as ephemeral messages and filters. The ride-sharing app Uber has also been incredibly successful, due in part to its convenient and user-friendly interface.

While there is no surefire formula for creating a successful mobile app, these examples show that there are certain elements that can contribute to success. By offering something unique and valuable to users, designing a user-friendly interface, and marketing the app effectively, businesses can increase their chances of creating a successful mobile app.

While the above-mentioned examples are just some of the many. Going forward, let us learn about some more of the famous brands that have used these success mantras to make their mobile applications successful.

Most Used Mobile Applications: Top 10 Of All Time

Popular mobile app #1 Amazon

amazon mobile applications

Amazon’s mobile application is one of the most successful in the world. The company has utilized an aggressive strategy that offers a wide variety of features that are not available on its website. Additionally, Amazon has focused on creating a user-friendly experience that makes it easy for customers to purchase items and track their orders. Amazon’s mobile application has received numerous awards, including the Mobile App of the Year award from “Mobile Marketer Magazine.”

Popular mobile app #2 WhatsApp

WhatsApp Messenger is a cross-platform mobile messaging app which allows you to exchange messages without having to pay for SMS. WhatsApp Messenger is available for iPhone, BlackBerry, Android, Windows Phone, and Nokia and yes, those devices can all message each other! WhatsApp uses your phone’s Internet connection (4G/3G/2G/EDGE or Wi-Fi, as available) to message and call friends and family. Switch from SMS to WhatsApp to send and receive messages, calls, photos, videos, documents, and voice messages.

One of the reasons that WhatsApp has been so successful is because it allows you to connect with all of your contacts easily. You can add people to your WhatsApp contact list directly from your phone’s address book. And, WhatsApp will automatically sync with your phone’s contacts, so you’ll always have the most up-to-date information.

Another big selling point for WhatsApp is that it’s completely free to use. There are no subscription fees or charges – all you need is an active internet connection (via Wi-Fi or your data plan). And, because WhatsApp uses the same internet data plan that you use for email and web browsing, there’s no additional charges from your carrier.

Popular mobile app #3 Candy Crush

Candy Crush was one of the earliest mobile games to achieve widespread success. It was released in 2012, and by early 2014 it had been downloaded over 500 million times. The game is based on the simple concept of matching similar candies together, and it’s this simplicity that has helped make it so popular.

In addition to its simple gameplay, Candy Crush also offers several other features that have helped it become successful. For instance, the game is designed to be highly replayable, with new levels being added on a regular basis. Additionally, the game includes social features that allow users to connect with friends and compare scores.

While Candy Crush may not be the most complicated or innovative mobile game out there, its success shows that sometimes the simplest games can be the most popular.

Popular mobile app #4 Dropbox

Dropbox is a file hosting service that offers cloud storage, file synchronization, and client software. It was founded in 2007 by Drew Houston and Arash Ferdowsi and is currently headquartered in San Francisco, California. Dropbox has been successful with its mobile application because it focuses on making the user experience easy and convenient. The application allows users to upload, download, and organize their files directly from their smartphones or tablets. It also offers several other features that make it easy for users to access and share their files on the go, such as automatic photo uploading and real-time collaboration tools.

In addition to these features, Dropbox has also been successful because it is well-integrated with other popular applications and services, such as Google Drive, WordPress, and Slack. This helps to make it easy for users to access their files from a variety of sources, which makes the overall user experience more seamless and convenient. Overall, Dropbox has proven to be one of the most successful mobile applications on the market today, thanks to its focus on user experience and its integration with other popular applications.

Popular mobile app #5 Snapchat

Who doesn’t know Snapchat – Our ancestors? Well, that was an awkward one.

However, the Snapchat application has been one of the most popular mobile applications over the past few years that has made rounds in the news all over the world.

What makes the Snapchat a popular mobile app? 

#1 App is simple to use

Users can quickly send a message to their friends by tapping on their name. The app also offers a wide range of filters and lenses that users can apply to their photos or videos. These features allow users to have fun and express themselves in new ways.

#2 The app has unique content sharing features

For example, a user can send a photo or video directly to another user without having it appear on their public story. This private sharing feature has made Snapchat a popular mobile app choice for users who want to share content with their close friends without worrying about it being seen by everyone.

#3 Successful marketing efforts

The app regularly partners with brands and celebrities to create unique filters and lenses. These partnerships help promote the app to a wider audience, while also creating engaging content that users can enjoy. Overall, the Snapchat application is a great example of how to successfully leverage all aspects of marketing and design to create an engaging mobile application.

Popular mobile app #6 Instagram

Instagram is a mobile photo-sharing application that was first released in October 2010. The app allows users to take photos and videos, and share them with other Instagram users, as well as on other social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr. In 2012, Facebook purchased Instagram for $1 billion.

What made Instagram a popular mobile app?

There are a few key factors that contributed to Instagram’s success:

#1 User-friendly and had a simple, yet elegant design

Second, Instagram capitalized on the growing trend of mobile photography. Third, the app offered unique features such as filters and photo-editing tools that set it apart from other similar applications on the market.

#2 Timing and luck

The app was released just as smartphone cameras were becoming more sophisticated, and just as social media was beginning to take off. This perfect storm of factors helped turn Instagram into the incredibly successful application it is today.

While there is no single recipe for success, it seems that Instagram found the perfect combination of timing, design, and features to make a truly great mobile application. Of course, it also didn’t hurt that Facebook purchased the app and promoted it to its millions of users! Today, Instagram has over 500 million monthly active users and is used by businesses and individuals alike. In fact, even Facebook itself has integrated the Instagram app into its flagship social media platform and encourages users to share their photos directly on Facebook.

Overall, it’s clear that Instagram was able to capitalize on trends to become one of the most successful mobile applications today.

Popular mobile app #7 Netflix

Netflix is one of the most successful and popular mobile apps in the world. What makes their application so successful?

Netflix has utilized several different strategies to create a successful mobile application: 

  • They have consistently provided high-quality content that users want to watch. 
  • They have made their application easy to use, with a user-friendly interface. 
  • Additionally, Netflix has utilized a number of marketing strategies to promote their application and make it more visible to potential users.

Users have reacted very positively to the Netflix application. They appreciate the high-quality content that is available, as well as the easy-to-use interface. Additionally, many users appreciate the unique features that the Netflix application offers, such as the ability to continue watching a show or movie even if you close the app.

Popular mobile app #8 Canva

Canva, an online graphic design platform, is one of the most successful mobile applications in the world. The company has over 10 million users and has been valued at over $1 billion. 

What makes Canva a popular mobile app?

#1 The application is very intuitive and easy to use

Even someone who has never created a graphic before can easily create a professional-looking design with Canva. The platform offers a wide variety of templates for users to choose from, as well as a library of over 1 million images and icons.

#2 Its focus on social media

The platform makes it easy for users to share their designs on social media, whether it be on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. In fact, over 1 billion images have been created using Canva since the platform launched in 2012.

Overall, Canva is a testament to the power of mobile applications and the success that many brands are seeing with their own apps. By focusing on creating an intuitive and easy-to-use solution, Canva has been able to attract millions of users and become a billion-dollar company. If your brand is looking to create a mobile application, it’s important to focus on creating an experience that your users will love. With the right approach, success is sure to follow!

Popular mobile app #9 Pinterest

Pinterest is a visual bookmarking tool that allows users to collect and share images of things they find interesting online. The Pinterest application became successful by taking advantage of the growing trend of mobile social media. The app allows users to browse pins, follow other users, and add pins to their boards.

Pinterest was one of the first applications to take advantage of the growing popularity of mobile social media. Since its launch in 2010, Pinterest has amassed an active user base of over 70 million people.

The success of the Pinterest application can be attributed to several different factors. 

#1 The app is visually appealing and easy to use

The appeal made it extremely engaging for users to download the app and use it without a guide.

#2 Features

The ability to follow other users and add pins to your own boards fosters a sense of community among users. 

#3 Gamification

Finally, the app has done an excellent job at incorporating elements of gamification into its design in order to enhance user engagement.

Overall, Pinterest has been able to achieve tremendous success with its mobile application by focusing on providing users with an engaging, visually appealing experience that promotes social interaction. If you are looking for a new and innovative way to stay up-to-date on the latest trends in your area of interest, then Pinterest is definitely worth checking out!

Popular mobile app #10 Meesho

Meesho, a social commerce platform, became successful because it offered a unique and convenient shopping experience for users. With Meesho, users could buy products from local sellers without having to leave their homes. Additionally, Meesho offered a wide variety of products, making it easy for users to find what they were looking for. Finally, Meesho was easy to use and offered a streamlined, user-friendly interface.

Mobile Applications: 5 Top Apple Store Applications

Popular mobile app #1 PCalc

The PCalc application became successful due to its well-executed marketing strategy and the many features that make it stand out from other calculator applications. The developers took the time to research what potential users wanted in a calculator application and included those features in PCalc. They also created a visually appealing interface that made the application fun to use. In addition to these factors, the developers focused heavily on advertising and marketing the application in order to reach a large audience. Through effective advertising campaigns across multiple platforms, PCalc was able to become one of the most popular calculator applications on the market today.

Overall, it is clear that the developers had a strategic plan for how they wanted to create and market the application, and this plan led to the application’s success.

Popular mobile app #2 Castro Podcast App

Castro Podcast became successful because it was the first podcast application on the App Store. It was released in 2008 when the App Store first opened, so it had a lot of competition. However, it was one of the first applications to allow users to listen to podcasts offline, which made it stand out from other podcast applications at the time. Additionally, it included many great features that made it easy to use and manage podcasts as well. Over time, Castro Podcast continued to receive updates and improvements, which kept users engaged with the application and drew in new listeners.

Moreover, Castro Podcast has received numerous awards for its design and functionality over the years, further boosting its popularity among podcast enthusiasts.

In short, Castro Podcast became successful because it offered unique features that set it apart from other podcast applications at the time, and it has continued to improve and evolve. Today, Castro Podcast remains one of the most popular podcast applications available on the App Store.

Popular mobile app #3 Apple TV+

The Apple TV+ application became successful because it had a great idea and the company put a lot of effort into making it a reality. The app was designed to help users watch their favorite shows and movies without having to go through channels or search for content online. Instead, users could simply open the app and find what they wanted to watch. Additionally, the app offered a variety of features that made it stand out from other applications on the market. For example, users could create watchlists of their favorite shows, get recommendations based on their watching habits, and even view behind-the-scenes content.

Since its launch, the Apple TV+ app has been extremely successful. It has been downloaded millions of times and has been praised by users for its simplicity and usefulness. Additionally, the app has won numerous awards, including a Webby Award and an Apple Design Award. It is clear that the Apple TV+ app is a well-designed and successful mobile application.

Popular mobile app #4 Day One Journal

Day One Journal is a mobile application that helps users to keep track of their thoughts and memories. The application was created by a husband and wife team, who were motivated to design an app that would help them journal about their lives. They were also inspired by the idea of capturing moments as they happened, which is why the app includes a built-in camera function.

Since its launch in 2012, Day One Journal has been downloaded over two million times. The app has been praised for its simple and elegant design, as well as its user-friendly interface. Additionally, users appreciate the fact that the app allows them to easily add photos and videos to their entries.

What has helped Day One Journal to become so successful? One of the main reasons is that the app caters directly to users’ needs and interests. For example, the developers paid close attention to their users’ feedback when designing the application, and they regularly updated it based on user suggestions. This has helped the app to stay relevant, as well as keep users engaged. Additionally, the developers have worked hard to create an extensive marketing campaign that has helped to raise awareness about the app.

Popular mobile app #5 Overcast Radio

The Overcast Radio application became successful by utilizing a unique and engaging feature set. The application offers a wide variety of content that is both interesting and easy to navigate. Additionally, the Overcast Radio application is highly customizable, allowing users to tailor their listening experience to their preferences. This level of flexibility has helped to make the Overcast Radio application a popular choice among mobile users.

Another key factor in the success of the Overcast Radio application is its focus on user feedback and community interaction. The developers regularly gather feedback from their users to improve the application over time. This close collaboration with their community has helped to create a more personalized listening experience for every user, which ultimately boosts the overall user engagement with the application.

Overall, it is clear that the Overcast Radio application has been extremely successful in offering a unique and engaging listening experience for its users. By focusing on customization and community feedback, this popular mobile application has developed a loyal following among today’s mobile users.

Mobile Applications: 5 Top Android Applications

Popular mobile app #1 Poweramp

A successful mobile application requires a lot of elements to come together perfectly. One of the most important factors is the quality of the app itself – it needs to be well-designed, intuitive, and user-friendly. Additionally, the app must offer a valuable and unique experience that isn’t available in any other application.

Poweramp, a music player app, is a great example of a successful mobile application. The app offers an extensive range of features that allow users to customize their listening experience. Additionally, the app has been designed with an intuitive and user-friendly interface. As a result, Poweramp has become one of the most popular music player apps available.

Popular mobile app #2 Google

Google’s Android mobile operating system has been a massive success, and the company’s Google Maps and Gmail applications are among the most popular in the world. But what makes these applications so successful?

One reason is that they are extremely user-friendly. Google Maps is praised for its accurate navigation, while Gmail is known for its easy-to-use interface and wide range of features. Additionally, both applications are constantly evolving and improving, ensuring that they stay ahead of their competition.

Another reason for Google’s success is the company’s focus on developing innovative technologies and features. For example, the ability to easily send location information through Google Maps has been a major selling point for many users. Similarly, the integration of Gmail with other Google services has made it an indispensable tool for many people.

Finally, Google’s commitment to security and privacy is another key factor in the success of its applications. Users trust the company to keep their data safe and secure, which is essential for any type of communication or navigation application.

Popular mobile app #3 Wifi Analyzer

WiFi Analyzer is one of the most popular wireless network analysis applications on Android. It was developed by Farproc and first released in 2009. The app has a 4.5-star rating on the Google Play Store, with over 1.5 million downloads.

One of the reasons WiFi Analyzer has been so successful is its intuitive and user-friendly interface. The app is easy to use and simple to navigate, allowing users to quickly find exactly what they’re looking for. Additionally, WiFi Analyzer constantly receives updates with new features and improvements, which has helped keep it relevant in an increasingly competitive mobile application market.

Another important factor that has led to the success of WiFi Analyzer is its comprehensive functionality. The app offers a variety of features that allow users to analyze their wireless networks and identify potential problems. For example, the app can scan for nearby WiFi networks and provide information on signal strength, channel interference, and more. This helps users optimize their network performance and troubleshoot any issues they may be experiencing.

Popular mobile app #4 Nova Launcher

Nova Launcher is an Android application that has seen a great deal of success. The developers have put a lot of thought into what users want and how they can improve the user experience. One of the ways that Nova Launcher stands out is through its gesture-based controls. This allows users to perform common tasks with just a few taps or swipes. Additionally, the application is highly customizable, giving users the ability to tailor their experience to their specific needs.

Nova Launcher has received a lot of positive feedback from users and has won multiple awards. The developers continue to update the application regularly, adding new features and improving existing ones. As a result, Nova Launcher remains one of the most popular Android applications on the market today. Overall, users seem to appreciate the level of detail and customization that Nova Launcher provides, which is why it has become so successful.

Popular mobile app #5 Tasker

Tasker is an application that many users find indispensable. It allows users to create scripts to automate various tasks on their mobile devices. This can include tasks such as turning on Wi-Fi when you get home, sending a text message when you miss a call, or automatically adjusting the brightness of your screen based on the time of day.

Tasker has been downloaded over a million times and has a 4.6 star rating on Google Play.

So, what makes Tasker so successful?

There are several reasons for Tasker’s success. First, the app is very versatile. It can be used for a wide variety of tasks, which appeals to a lot of users. Second, the interface is easy to use and understand, which allows even novices to create complex scripts. And finally, Tasker has a vibrant online community where users can share ideas and help each other with scripting problems.

Overall, it’s clear that Tasker has become one of the most successful mobile applications out there because it offers a lot of value to users and is constantly being improved. If you’re looking for a powerful tool to automate tasks on your mobile device, Tasker is definitely worth checking out.


Brands have been putting a lot of effort into creating successful mobile applications. The key to a successful mobile application is in understanding how users interact with their devices and designing an intuitive user experience. Additionally, brands need to create unique features that make their application stand out from the competition. By following these simple tips, your brand can create a successful and award-winning mobile application!

Not only these 20 stories are an inspiration, but if you’re working on a Mobile Application project and need some helpful advice and guidance, contact our team at 12 Channels, for an award-winning Application Design, today. We’ll do everything we can to make sure your dream becomes a reality!

12 Channels is more than just a digital marketing agency, we’re also your partner in building the future of mobility. We help you with award-winning application development services that will engage with customers and encourage them to take action on their needs or desires for products/services offered through our client’s business practices!

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