The start of lockdowns and restrictive measures in April 2020 marked the beginning of the drastic increase in downloads for remote education apps such as Google Classroom, and Edmondo, as did other mobile device learning tools, such as Duolingo, Photomath, and the popular U-Dictionary, says a new study by an alternative app store.

These same apps saw a new surge in downloads in November; when 67 countries kept their schools closed, affecting 693 million children, roughly 40 per cent of the world's students, said Uptodown. Its study shows global user trends and interesting data regarding the demand of apps over the last 12 months.

Curiously, apps purely for children's entertainment; games such as Toca Life World, Princess Salon, My Town: Home Dollhouse, Club Penguin, or the Peppa Pig video app, have had a continuous rise in the number of downloads.

Apps aimed at improving productivity and other office work tools, have also seen an increase in downloads, also peaking during the months of April and November during the first and second waves of the pandemic.

One of the steepest growth trends in downloads has been for the Zoom video calling app. From an average of 11,000 downloads per month in 2019, it increased to around one million monthly downloads between April and September 2020, multiplying tenfold, on the Uptodown platform.

What about dating apps? Although one might think that with the beginning of the restrictions, the fear of contagion and the advice to avoid interaction with people outside of those whom we are forced to live with at home, apps of this type would have experienced a spectacular drop in the number of downloads, the reality is that they have experienced moderate decreases, even having a slight increase in downloads during the first wave, in March and April, and at the beginning of the summer (June and July). In the statistics, Tinder registered as a great favourite followed closely by Grindr.

As per the study, fitness and sports performance apps saw an exponential rise at the beginning of the pandemic, whilst everyone seemed to be taking advantage of lockdowns by staying fit while being at home.

The demand for food ordering apps such as Uber Eats or Deliveroo experienced a decline in March, with the onset of the pandemic, and its greatest growth in May, when the restrictions and confinements of the first wave began to relax.

When it comes to using mobile devices as a form of entertainment, 2020 has undoubtedly been a good year for mobile game developers. This sector has experienced spectacular growth in the number of downloads. With evident peaks in April and March, downloads have remained higher than the previous year in all subsequent months. The most popular games of the early pandemic months were PUBG Mobile, PUBG Lite, Free Fire, Fortnite, Clash of Clans, Brawl Stars, Gacha life and Among Us.