The annual uptick in app downloads and new device activations around Christmas has translated into big mobile gains for Facebook.
During the holidays the social network’s apps climbed to the top of the iOS and Android charts, with both Facebook’s standalone Facebook Messenger app and mobile app seeing noticeable spikes in downloads after Christmas according to AppData. The apps are currently the #1 and #9 most popular free iPhone apps.
The story is similar on Android, and as of today, Facebook Messenger and Facebook for Android are the #1 and #2 most popular free Android apps.
The numbers are a nice cap to the year for Facebook, which focused heavily on its mobile strategy in 2011. Mobile companies accounted for more than half of the acquisitions Facebook made this year and one of those companies — Beluga, which the network bought in March — developed the social network’s standalone messenger app.
Facebook also finished the year with more mobile users than ever, according to Enders Analysis analyst Benedict Evans, who estimates that the social network’s mobile apps now have more than 300 million MAU. Unsurprisingly, the iOS and Android versions of Facebook’s apps account for the lion’s share of its mobile userbase. Approximately 117 million people log in to Facebook’s mobile app every month from an iOS device and 87.8 million from an Android device. In addition, almost half of all Android and iOS device owners have installed Facebook’s mobile apps.
This story originally appeared on our sister site, Inside Mobile Apps.