There is little doubt by now that Pokemon Go is becoming the most successful mobile app of all time, at least as far as launch-week performance is concerned. Niantic just launched the game in Germany... and it hit No. 1 on the iPhone revenue chart in just three hours. The 13 hours it took to hit the top of the US sales charts last week was incredible enough. But apparently the American media storm surrounding Pokemon has driven consumers in other countries into an absolute frenzy of anticipation.
I chatted with analytics company SimilarWeb on Wednesday morning and they made a very interesting comparison. The two most popular recent mobile apps are Clash Royale and Slitherio. They had 1.67% and 0.84% daily user levels among all Android phone users in America four days after launching.
But Pokemon Go hit a 10.81% daily user penetration level four days after its US debut.
This number is so astonishing it's difficult for many industry people to even wrap their minds around. It's worth noting that this is an incredibly lucrative game , topping $2 million a day revenue generation rate in US market according to some vendors I interviewed.
Usually games that monetize exceptionally well do not drive massive download numbers. The same mechanics that enable "Game of War" or "Mobile Strike" to generate a billion dollars a year also prevent them from hitting the top 10 in download numbers. But a game has finally figured out how to be both a download behemoth and a sales leviathan. It is a unique evolution, indeed.
Pokemon GO exists on an exalted and unique level of its own. It is not an app success — it is a cultural phenomenon on par with Star Wars in 1977 or Turkish tulips in Netherlands in 1637.
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