Video conferencing apps like Houseparty, ZOOM, Hangouts Meet, and Microsoft Team are seeing record growth in demand due to work from home policies, social distancing measures and government lockdowns during the coronavirus pandemic, App Annie is reporting.
During the week of March 14-21, 2020, business apps topped 62 million downloads across iOS and Google Play, up 45% from the week prior.
As a result of increasing working from home policies, Google has opened up its premium paid features of Hangouts Meet for free, ZOOM is offering K-12 students free access and Microsoft is offering a free 6-month subscription to Microsoft Teams.
However, it appears that video conferencing is not limited to business use cases. Amidst coronavirus-induced lockdowns and home quarantines, people are turning to social networking video conferencing apps to stay connected to family and friends.
Houseparty, a video conferencing app, particularly popular among Gen Z, has seen phenomenal growth in Europe. In Italy, weekly downloads during March 15-21 surged at 423x the level of average weekly downloads in Q4 2019. In Spain, Houseparty skyrocketed in popularity from a relatively low base of downloads by 2360-fold during the week of March15-21 — establishing a strong foothold in a market previously without wide-scale penetration.
Meanwhile, ZOOM Cloud Meetings topped downloads charts globally throughout February and March with downloads continuing to stay elevated through the US, UK, and Europe.