Top 20 iOS homescreen customization apps reach 5.7M installs after iOS 14 release – ProWellTech
The trend towards customizing the iOS 14 home screen means that new apps are at the top of the App Store charts and record downloads are provided for sources of inspiration such as Pinterest. According to new data from the market research company Sensor Tower in the App Store, the installations of the 20 best apps for customizing homescreens reached 5.7 million downloads worldwide in the first four days after the release of iOS 14 on September 16.
Notably, the three most downloaded apps – Widgetsmith, Color Widgets, and Photo Widget – account for 95% of those 5.7 million downloads. This shows that the rest of today’s app customization market is much smaller. However, this could change over time as more apps embrace the trend and add innovative and unique features.
Sensor Tower’s study of the home screen customization market only focused on apps that were used to create home screen widgets or existed primarily for their maintenance, such as calendars, clocks, memos, and others.
To determine if the app offered home screen customization tools, Sensor Tower analyzed the app metadata of all apps that were rated in the App Store at any time after September 16, and manually checked those apps to make sure their Functionality is related to the customization of the home screen.
The report also focused more on widget apps than apps, rather than helping users create custom icons or existing apps that added widget functionality, as Sensor Tower decided it wouldn’t be able to use it their metadata to determine how many had done this. Also, in some cases, it is difficult to determine if an app with a larger purpose than widgets is moving up on the charts just because widgets have now been added.
The top 20 list includes the following in order:
Widgetsmith, color widgets, photo widget, photobox widget, memo widget, home photo widget, motivational widget, ermine, date today, hey weather, time deck, widgeridoo, view 2, widget assistant, widget web, medallion , ItemMemo, OMDZ, clock widget for home screen and photo widgets.
Together, the group generated a total of $ 400,000 in consumer spending in four days from September 17th to 20th. Widgetsmith dominated the group, accounting for $ 370,000 of it, followed by an app called Date Today with nearly $ 20,000 per sensor tower estimates. (We should note that Widgetsmith’s number is a bit lower than some of the other estimates that have been made float around.)
Although Sensor Tower’s study had a narrower focus, there are signals that many apps have benefited from the customization craze that extends beyond the widget makers themselves.
The design inspiration resource Pinterest, as mentioned above, had daily downloads. TuneTrack, now the no.18 free app (no game) in the US App Store, seems to be gaining momentum in the absence of an official Spotify widget. The app offers both Apple Music and Spotify widgets that you can use to display your favorite music on your home screen.
According to Sensor Tower, for example, 552,000 installations were carried out in TuneTrack between September 17 and 20 – an increase of 1,840% compared to the previous week (9 / 10-9 / 13). The motivational widget saw 431,000 installs, up 798%.
Meanwhile, the Procreate Pocket design tool is the second largest paid app (no game) in the US, and PicsArt is number 31 for free. An app that makes changing icons easier, Icon Changer +, is number 40 in the top Charts for free apps in the US, followed by an app called Shortcuts Not the same shortcuts app from Apple. (And surprisingly you can use the same name!)
Since there is no specific category for home screen customization tools, some of the new apps are in the Productivity category while others categorized themselves as utility apps or something entirely different. This makes it harder for a consumer to compare the rankings of all the top apps that offer home screen customization features in one place.
Given that iOS 14 has effectively created an entirely new category of apps, it is possible that Apple will consider adding a customization category to the App Store in the future if the trend continues long-term.
Currently, however, Apple is addressing the recognizability issues with new editorial content in the App Store. For example, a story featured on the Today page in the App Store is titled “How to Set Up Widgets” and recommends a number of apps that have added widgets – such as Todoist, Carrot Weather, Timepage, Apollo, Spark Mail, and others, in addition to Widgetsmith.
There are also new widgets remaining as developers roll out their iOS 14 updates. Fantastic, for example just launched 12 homescreen widgets today.
Unfortunately, Apple didn’t give its developer community enough time to prepare for launch day. The company announced the release of iOS 14 with less than 24 hours notice and without the final version of Xcode available to developers. When users started customizing their home screens, they may not find all of the widgets they wanted.