As of January 2013, the Social Networking category ranked third in monthly revenues, behind only Games and Productivity in the iOS App Store. And that’s up 87% compared to January 2012 monthly revenues, representing 3% of total iOS App Store revenue. Its growth is impressive and nowhere near its ceiling.
The study data shows that the messaging and dating apps are registering as the most significant revenue generators among social networking apps, with LINE, WhatsApp Messenger, and Zoosk leading the way in various countries.
Notably, Apple's Find My Friends made a climb from 17th place to 2nd in downloads, while Facebook Messenger overtook the main Facebook app to take first place. App Annie attributes the rise of Find My Friends to the App Store splash screen introduced in iOS 6 that encourages users to download several free apps from Apple, including Find My Friends.
As is true for many aspects of Apple's business, China was one of the fastest-growing markets for social networking apps, with the United States and China now combining to account for half of all social networking downloads worldwide.