The BBC News app was the most downloaded news app in the UK in 2022.
The app was newly-installed 908,000 times, while the Sky News app came in second place with 607,000 installations, according to data provided to Press Gazette by app intelligence company Sensor Tower. The data covers downloads from January to November 2022.
Both the BBC News and Sky News apps were downloaded more times in 2022 compared to 2021. The BBC News app was downloaded 808,000 times during the same 11-month period in 2021, while Sky’s app was installed 328,000 times.
While downloads do not reveal which news apps are most used or most present on news consumers’ mobiles and tablets, they do give an indication of emerging apps and apps that remain popular among new users.
The third most popular app for new installations in 2022 was news aggregator Opera News (332,000 installs).
As in previous years, apps linked to individual news brands remain popular in the UK, taking 12 of the top 20 spots - the majority of which are apps from legacy news names.
After the BBC News and Sky News apps, the most popular app from a legacy publisher was the Guardian’s breaking news app with 172,000 downloads (rank eight). It was followed by the LBC app (170,000 downloads, rank nine) and The Times and The Sunday Times app (164,000 downloads, rank ten).
TalkTV’s app, which allows users to watch the channel’s programming live or catch up on content, was the sixth most-downloaded news app in 2022 with 191,000 installations. Rival outlet GB News’ app narrowly missed the top 20 with 89,000 downloads in 2022 according to Sensor Tower.
The highly popular Apple News app, which comes pre-installed on iPhones and Upday, which is pre-installed on Samsung phones, did not appear in the data since Sensor Tower measures active installations from the App Store and Google Play. Sports news apps have been excluded from our ranking.
Overall, the top 20 news apps were downloaded a combined 4.4 million times in 2022, while the top ten were downloaded 3.1 million times. This was less than 2021, when the top ten news apps excluding sports news apps were downloaded 4.1 million times.
Apps from legacy news names, however, did better in 2022 compared to 2021. In 2021 the five most-downloaded legacy brands (BBC News, Sky News, Mail Online, The Guardian, and The Telegraph) were installed a combined 1.7 million times, compared to 2 million times for the leading five legacy news apps (BBC News, Sky News, The Guardian and The Times and Sunday Times) in 2022.
Most popular news apps in the US
News aggregators dominated the US list in 2022, taking all of the top five spots.
NewsBreak, a local news focused news aggregator, was again the most downloaded app with 7.1 million installations, although it was downloaded significantly fewer times than in 2021 (10.7 million downloads).
Second most popular was Japanese app Smart News (2.3 million downloads), which launched a US version in 2014. It was followed by another aggregator, Local News (1.8 million downloads).
Tenth most popular was Fox’s live streaming app Fox Nation, which was downloaded 1 million times.
Several other right-leaning news apps also featured among the US’ 20 most-downloaded apps in 2022. Among them were DailyWire+ (rank 12 with 897,000 downloads), Newsmax TV(rank 13, 879,000 downloads) and Epoch Times (rank 15, 834,000 downloads).
This story was updated on 5 December to explain why the Upday app is not captured in Sensor Tower's data.
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