Google Maps Loses U.S. Mobile App Lead to Facebook in 2012

By Todd R. Weiss  |  Posted 2013-01-24 Print this article Print

The Facebook app has also "consistently ranked #1 in terms of mobile app engagement," according to the report, currently accounting for 23 percent of the time spent on apps by users. Its sister app Instagram owns another 3 percent of the market, the report states. "Various Google apps combine to account for 10 percent of time spent, with Gmail owning the highest individual share at 3 percent. These two leading web companies combine for more than 1 out of every 3 minutes spent on mobile apps."

In 2013, Lipsman expects that Google and Facebook will wrestle for app supremacy, while the rest of the field will fight for their shares. "If there is one thing we can all bet on, it's that the market will look very different a year from now," he wrote.

In December 2012, when the new Google Maps app for iOS 6 was released, it was downloaded by more than 10 million users in the first 48 hours after it became available in Apple's App Store Dec. 13, satiating many iOS users who were scrambling for help since Apple's maps fiasco in September.

Apple had replaced the Google Maps app with its own in-house maps app that was met with derision upon its release, eventually forcing a public apology from company CEO Tim Cook and a restructuring of company management. Apple had dropped the built-in Google Maps app from iOS 6 when the new operating system launched in September, and the move turned out to be a huge embarrassment for Apple when the replacement Apple Maps app left legions of users disappointed with the app's performance and accuracy.

Many iOS 5 users never even upgraded to iOS 6 when it was released because they'd lose access to the native built-in Google Maps app that was missing.


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