After eight years in the App Store, YouTube finally climbed to reach the number one spot for highest-grossing app in the U.S. this week.
Until now, YouTube has never ranked higher than the number three spot. While it’s not clear exactly what pushed YouTube into pole position, revenues have gotten a big increase in recent years due to the launch of its $9.99 a month YouTube Red service.
YouTube Red was launched in 2015, replacing YouTube Music Key and giving users a simplified way to access Play Music and YouTube content through the same interface, without the ads. When YouTube Red first launched, it was estimated to be bringing in between $100,000 and $300,000 per day on iPhone.
Since then, its popularity has continued to climb as the “cord cutting” generation has continued to gain prominence. According to Sensor Tower data, last month YouTube grossed $14 million on iOS.
YouTube’s revenue also comes from YouTube’s virtual tipping mechanism, Super Chat. However, it doesn’t include YouTube Music, YouTube Gaming, or the money that YouTube makes from movie rentals, purchases, or advertising in general.
Apple’s “Top Grossing” chart was removed from the App Store with iOS 11, but App Store analytics companies such as Sensor Tower still have access to it.