TikTok Becomes First Non-Game App to Reach $10B in Consumer Spending

TikTok Becomes First Non-Game App to Reach $10B in Consumer Spending – TikTok’s short-form video platform has achieved a significant milestone, becoming the initial non-game mobile app to surpass $10 billion in consumer spending on both the Apple App Store and Google Play. This accomplishment, revealed in an analysis by app intelligence provider data.ai, follows the app’s earlier achievement of reaching 1 billion monthly active users in 2021. 

Notably, the exclusive group of apps achieving this financial feat has historically been dominated by games, such as Candy Crush Saga, Honor of Kings, Monster Strike, and Clash of Clans. The report highlights that TikTok commenced 2023 with a consumer spending total exceeding $6.2 billion and subsequently experienced a 61% growth, adding an additional $3.8 billion throughout the year. 

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This figure represents a 15% increase compared to the total consumer spending in 2022, which was $3.3 billion, according to data.ai. It’s important to note that the report focuses solely on TikTok’s consumer spending on iOS and Google Play, excluding third-party Android app stores in China, implying that the overall consumer spending for TikTok could be even greater.

The expenditures stem from TikTok’s in-app acquisition of “coins,” a virtual currency utilized by users to purchase gifts for creators on the platform. These gifts serve as a means to reward creators for their content and can be converted into fiat currency, with TikTok retaining 50% of the payout. The most widely adopted in-app purchase is a $19.99 bundle offering 1,321 coins, constituting a quarter of the app’s revenue. 

It’s worth noting that TikTok also generates revenue through avenues beyond in-app purchases, including advertising and e-commerce through TikTok Shop, although these were not factored into data.ai’s analysis.  According to data.ai, the majority of the in-app spending that propelled TikTok to the $10 billion milestone came from U.S. consumers and iOS users in China, contributing approximately 30% of the revenue individually or 60% when combined. 

Other markets, including Saudi Arabia, Germany, the U.K., and Japan, collectively made up 13% of the app’s in-app purchase revenue. While TikTok stands as the sole non-game app to achieve the $10 billion mark, other non-game apps also generate billions, albeit lagging significantly behind TikTok. Notably, TikTok’s closest competitors in this regard, Tinder and YouTube, trail by approximately $2 to $3 billion, as outlined in the report.

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“TikTok is poised to become the highest earning mobile app ever — approaching the $15 billion milestone in 2024. Consumers are spending over $11 million per day tipping their favorite content creators, propelling TikTok past the world’s most lucrative mobile game to date: the addictive and beloved Candy Crush Saga,” said Lexi Sydow, head of Insights at data.ai, in an announcement about the new milestone. The firm predicts TikTok revenue will grow again in 2024, reaching $15 billion in consumer spending.

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