Ten Chinese apps, including TikTok, QQ and Soul App, made the cut for the top 100 entertainment apps worldwide by both downloads and revenue, according to a new report penned by mobile data analytics platform Sensor Tower.
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Sensor Tower points out that during Q2 2021 entertainment apps brought home more than $2.1 billion in earnings from global in-app purchases, a record in recent years. Among the top 100 entertainment apps by revenue globally, 20 were developed by Chinese companies. As well as music and streaming categories, social media apps demonstrate the potential to become cash cows. For example, SOUL, a metaverse social platform for young people, has remained on the list for two consecutive years.
The first digital natives to grow up with the rise of the Internet, Gen Zers enjoy a wide range of entertainment and social options and are on track to become a major driver of consumer spending. SOUL is gaining currency with Gen Z due to the app’s creation of an “otherworldly” experience where users are immersed in a diverse range of social activities. Data shows that Soul App raked in tens of thousands of downloads, landing itself in the top 10 free apps on the App Store in China in September 2021. Monthly active users nearly doubled on a monthly basis; 35% of them fell into the category of daily active users. On average, Soul users checked the app 21 times with a usage time of 49 minutes per day. The platform recorded an average of 66 peer-to-peer messages per person daily, even higher than some of the instant messaging products.
It is SOUL’s design that has won enthusiastic recognition from digital natives. “There is no app currently on the market that allows users to break free of the fear of being judged when they post what they feel in their heart and what they are thinking in everyday life, and to hear instant and heartfelt resonance. Why can’t we move our physical social life online, letting everyone bond and play with like-minded peers of a similar age, anytime and anywhere they want?” said Soul App founder Zhang Lu years ago. SOUL first went online in November 2016 with a commitment to easing loneliness and bringing a feeling of happiness into social interactions and expression.
Five years on, SOUL remains true to its ideal of encouraging young people to speak their minds freely and share who they truly are. For that to happen, it has reimagined the way people connect and created a distinct design. Doing so has allowed the app to resonate with young users, as evidenced by its impressive penetration rate among the Gen-Z cohort. Out of about 34 million monthly active users, more than 70% are Gen Zers. Guided by its vision of “building a social metaverse for young generations”, SOUL has also introduced new social scenarios to improve its user experience in social metaverse.
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