TikTok is big. Almost unfathomably enormous, actually. The product of Chinese parent company ByteDance, the social media video-sharing app has remained a fixture at the top of the App Store charts for more than a year now — with no sign of it losing that position any time soon.
Journalist Chris Stokel-Walker is the author of a new book, titled TikTok Boom: China’s Dynamite App and the Superpower Race for Social Media. It launches today in Europe and worldwide, with a US launch coming September 30.
Stokel-Walker spoke with Cult of Mac about what makes TikTok, well, tick, the app’s face-off with Donald Trump, and why it’s no longer exclusively an app for teens to show off their dance moves.
President Biden signed an executive order Thursday that reverses Trump’s attempts to force TikTok’s developer ByteDance to sell the wildly popular app to American companies. But Biden doesn’t take the pressure off it and other Chinese-made apps. He’s just no longer singling out TikTok.
TikTok has completed yet another victory lap as the most downloaded, non-gaming title in the App Store, this time for the month of May. According to app analytics platform Sensor Tower, TikTok enjoyed more than 80 million monthly installs across both iOS and Android that month. This time, Brazil was the no. 1 market for TikTok, followed by China, where the app is called Douyin.
On iOS, TikTok was followed by YouTube in second place, then Instagram, then video editing app CapCut, then WhatsApp, Facebook, Zoom, Messenger, Google Maps, and Gmail rounding out the rest of the top 10.
A simple copy-and-paste app called Paste Keyboard shot to the top of the App Store charts this week after languishing in obscurity for years.
Made by 28-year-old South Korean developer Techin Park, the keyboard app hitched a ride on TikTok’s massive success — and then dethroned it as the most popular app in the United States.
“Everyone is curious how such [a] simple idea, copy and paste, has trumped the almighty TikTok in app rank,” Park told Cult of Mac. “Copy and paste is a feature we all use at least once daily. Not many think it’s special. But in reality, increasing efficiency [when it comes to] how we copy and paste can save a lot more of our time than we possibly think.”
And, apparently, score you crazy numbers of downloads, too.
Zhang Yiming, CEO and co-founder of TikTok maker ByteDance, has announced that he will step down from his role leading the company. Co-founder Liang Rubo, currently the company’s head of human resources, will replace him in the role. Zhang, 38, will instead focus on “long-term strategy” for the company.
TikTok has cemented itself at the top of the App Store for yet another month, showing the seemingly unassailable dominance of the video-sharing app. According to app analytics platform Sensor Tower, TikTok was the top-grossing, non-gaming app worldwide for February 2021.
For the month, it raked in more than $110 million in user spending across both iOS and Android. That’s approaching twice what it earned in revenue that month last year, although marginally down from the $128 million it pulled in back in January.
The forced sale of TikTok’s American operations to a group of U.S. buyers including Walmart and Oracle has been indefinitely postponed, The Wall Street Journal reports.
TikTok became a major target of former President Donald Trump, who claimed the Chinese-owned video-sharing service posed a security risk. However, it seems that President Joe Biden’s administration is not so dead-set on banishing the super-popular app from the United States.
TikTok is off to a great start in 2021, as app analytics platform Sensor Tower notes that it was the top grossing, non-gaming app worldwide for January. In total, users spent $128 million on TikTok during the month, an increase of 3.8x in revenue from January last year.