This Week’s Top 20 Applications List Shows Some Games Still More Popular than Holiday Apps

The search for “Christmas” yields results for around 500 applications on Facbook. A general search for “holidays” gets around 120 app results. “Hanukkah” or “Chanukah”, yields ten results, which is nine more than Kwanzaa’s one. Meanwhile, “Festivus”, the fictional holiday from “Seinfeld” has four apps dedicated to telling everyone just how badly they’ve let you down this year.

But games are even more popular than the holidays, according to AppData. On our list of the 20 applications that gained the most monthly active users this past week, we first have Zynga’s PetVille, which has grown by 9.31 million monthly active users this past week to reach 10.3 million since launching at the beginning of the month. RockYou’s Birthday Cards is at number two, growing by 7.33 million monthly actives to reach nearly 25 million. However, this number appears to also include a version of the company’s Zoo World game, as it has interestingly built Birthday Cards to include a version of the virtual zoo inside of it.

Top Gainers This Week
Name MAU Gain Gain, %
1. PetVille10,250,099+9,305,801+90.79
2. Birthday Cards24,957,972+7,326,053+29.35
3. Christmas Cards!8,271,973+6,685,908+80.83
4. Happy Pets10,351,430+2,897,321+27.99
5. Christmas Cheer6,001,424+2,864,071+47.72
6. FarmVille72,898,865+2,421,869+3.32
7. Quiz Planet!8,207,512+2,372,374+28.90
8. Christmas goodies3,334,508+2,353,762+70.59
9. FishVille26,186,935+2,144,789+8.19
10. Snowball Fight5,849,404+2,092,222+35.77
11. Zoo World6,185,092+2,041,084+33.00
12. Daily Photo6,673,737+1,653,127+24.77
13. Mobile12,715,798+1,638,398+12.88
14. @Smiles2,140,122+1,345,941+62.89
15. Fish Isle3,994,610+1,321,060+33.07
16. Friend Quiz9,418,596+1,316,758+13.98
17. Santa Yourself1,499,936+1,090,353+72.69
18. O Christmas Tree3,349,695+1,070,131+31.95
19. Holiday Drinks1,555,008+958,106+61.61
20. Friends Exposed16,393,094+955,453+5.83

Note that this list looks at which apps gained the most monthly active users in the last week, while our Wednesday list covers the apps that gained the most daily active users in the past week. The MAU number shows the long-term trajectory of an app’s popularity, while DAU shows how many people love it so much that they come back every day; because users tend to pay for virtual goods within apps they come back to every day, the latter number is a better measure of monetization. Also, our Friday list looks the apps that grew by the most monthly active users each week to end with a total of between 100,000 and 1 million — by looking at this lower range, we can sometimes spot smaller apps on their way to becoming hits.

Christmas Cards! is the highest ranked holiday-themed app in the short history of Facebook applications. Launched in November 2008, it ranks 33rd with a total or 8.27 million monthly active users; it’s actually yet another gifting app made with LOLapps’ popular white-label Gift Creator app. While Christmas Cards may only be useful for one month of the year, but in that one month has a larger user base than the amount of people who bought Modern Warefare 2 in the first month a game taunted with the largest entertainment release of all time.

This year shows that people are using apps to branch out and Christmas is a great trial time for app developers who may or may not commit to further seasons. Of the top 20 for monthly active users last week, six were Christmas themed apps, while another four marched their way up on the back end of the top 40.

Christmas Cheer is the stand out of holiday apps released in 2009. Originally put out in October, the app has seen a rapid rise in the last few weeks, finishing 4th for gaining monthly users and a total of 6 million people using the app in the past month.

Meanwhile, while Christmas apps have a high change of trading positions in the top 20 as Christmas time approaches, things are a little tougher for the other holidays. No other holidays, even a general holidays app, appears on any top 20 lists for December thus far. The best chance is for Happy Hanukkah!, which should up in our up and coming list last week, and went up 95 percent for monthly active users this week. Now about 275,000 people are using the service. Plus, with Hanukkah having a whole week dedicated to itself, there is a good chance for this app to see sudden, maybe staggering, growth in the next two weeks.

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