Up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, B, A, select, start. Is that how it goes?

Up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, B, A, start. Is that how it goes?

Android and iOS platforms differ in terms of popular apps in both free and paid categories. While Android users prefer utilities and communication apps, iOS users are quite fond of games.

Apps are the lifeline of mobile platforms today, and with Android and iOS being the biggest ecosystems, it can only be reasonable to analyze trends through the apps that users are downloading. For April 2013, we see some interesting insights from analytics firm Distimo.

In gist, there is quite some disparity between the apps that Android users download as opposed to our iOS using counterparts. For one, mobile games are the dominant download on both the free and paid top lists on iOS. Android users, meanwhile, prefer to download utilities and communication or social tools.

Top 5 free iOS apps

  1. Candy Crush Saga
  2. Sonic Dash
  3. YouTube
  4. Injustice: Gods Among Us
  5. Dentist Office

Top 5 free Android apps

  1. Facebook
  2. WhatsApp Messenger
  3. Skype
  4. Facebook Messenger
  5. Instagram

Four out of five of the top free iOS apps are games, while none of the top five Android apps are. However, it seems Android users are more social than is commonly thought, with the top apps being either social networking tools (Facebook, Instagram) or messengers (Skype, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger).

Top 5 paid iOS apps

  1. WhatsApp
  2. Temple Run: Oz
  3. Minecraft Pocket Edition
  4. Cut the Rope: Time Travel
  5. Pou

Top 5 paid Android apps

  1. Swiftkey Keyboard
  2. Titanium Backup Pro
  3. Minecraft Pocket Edition
  4. Poweramp Full Version
  5. Nova Launcher Prime

As with the trend for free apps, we also see a similar trend in paid apps for both platforms, with games dominating iOS, only topped by WhatsApp (the Android variant is subscription based after the first year, but an outright purchase on iOS). Meanwhile, utilities dominate Android, with four out of five being apps that are commonly used to customize or tweak the system.

However, it seems the top-grossing apps for both platforms are dominated by freemium games, with 9 out of 10 top apps in the iOS and Android lists being games (the only exception is LINE on Android). Interestingly enough, the top-earning apps got their money from localized markets, such as Korea’s Kakao Talk, and Japan’s LINE.

These trends are based on global data gathered by Distimo through the month of April. Are Android users more serious, after all?

Image credit: Couple using smartphones / Shutterstock