Social apps are, unsurprisingly, the most downloaded apps across Android and iOS devices, and for the longest time, Facebook was the most popular among them. However, despite only being around since 2017, the Chinese short video app TikTok has just overtaken Zuckerberg's behemoth as the world's most downloaded app.
If you're a procrastinator, TikTok might be the most-used app on your phone. As an endless stream of videos algorithmically chosen just for you, it's easy to lose countless hours to scrolling. Of course, that only works if the app is actually working. A major outage affected TikTok users around the globe yesterday, but the service managed to come back online late last night.
The internet is generally a great place to waste time, but TikTok is the current king in this respect. I've resisted installing it on my phone since I get enough secondhand short video smoke from my girlfriend, but this new development is a worrying one. TikTok for Android TV is now available on the Play Store, which could put an end to any semblance of productivity we were pretending to still be capable of.
I think it's safe to say that short-form video content reached the pinnacle of popularity this year. Seeing TikTok's wild success, competing platforms such as YouTube and Instagram were quick to jump on the bandwagon with Shorts and Reels, respectively. It seems like even Google doesn't want to miss out on getting a piece of the pie as the search giant is expanding its carousel of short videos in mobile search results to include content from more sources.