Facebook and Google have dominated smartphone screens for the past three years

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By Greg Sterling

Measurement firm comScore released its latest round of online and mobile rankings for the US market. Since comScore began reporting on mobile app penetration roughly three years ago, Facebook has been and continues to be the number one app. Moreover, the entire top 15 has been relatively stable.

The chart below reflects the current mobile audience reach of the identified apps.

Top Apps April 2017

Facebook has three apps in the top 15. Google has six. After that, Apple has three, followed by Snapchat, Pandora and Amazon.

Let’s compare the same list for the preceding three years around the same time. The chart immediately below is from February 2016 (released in April). Appearing below but not on the 2017 list are Yahoo Stocks and Pinterest.

Top Apps February 2016

Going back another year to 2015, Twitter is present, and so is Snapchat, which wasn’t on the 2016 list. It should be noted that these charts are just point-in-time checks, not necessarily representative of the rest of the year.

Top Apps April 2015

If we go back farther still, to April 2014, we find Yahoo Stocks and Weather, Twitter and the Weather Channel. None of them are present in April 2017.

Top Apps April 2014

Each year, two (or three) apps swap in or out of the Top 15 list, while particular apps may migrate up or down the list. What’s striking to me, however, is that the top 15 apps list has been surprisingly stable during a period of accelerating change and market upheaval.

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