French social media app, BeReal has defeated Instagram and TikTok to win the iPhone app of the year for the 2022 App Store Awards.
Alexis Barreyat and Kevin Perreau developed the app that was launched in 2020, but it rapidly gained popularity in early and mid-2022. BeReal’s main feature is a daily notification that encourages users to share a photo of themselves and their immediate surroundings, given a randomly selected two-minute window every day.
It became popular among college students during the year. It had over 10 million active daily users and 21.6 million active monthly users in late August and has now become the crown app during the App Store Awards for 2022. Critics noted its emphasis on authenticity, which some felt crossed the line into mundanity.
BeReal’s notification strategy has inspired rivals such as Instagram and TikTok to adopt the same model. It is somewhat refreshing that a social app won the best app at this year’s App Store Awards as compared to the last two years’ top apps “Toca Life World” (a Kids’ app) and “WakeOut!” (a workout app).
In its blog post announcing the App Store Awards for 2022, Apple described BeReal as an app to provide”an authentic look into the lives of their family and friends.”
More on the App Store Awards winners for 2022
Apple announced the winners of the App Store Awards for 2022 today, highlighting 16 games and applications that encouraged people to engage with the world more profoundly, use more of their imaginations, and stay connected to friends and loved ones.
The winners of the 2022 App Store Awards represent a diverse community of developers from around the world whose apps and games were selected by Apple’s global App Store editorial team for delivering exceptional experiences and making a profound cultural impact.
“This year’s App Store Award winners reimagined our experiences with apps that delivered fresh, thoughtful, and genuine perspectives,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO.
“From self-taught solo creators to international teams spanning the globe, these entrepreneurs are making a meaningful impact, and represent the ways in which apps and games influence our communities and lives.”Tim Cook
While BeReal won the applications category for iPhone users, MacFamilyTree 10 by Synium Software GmbH, a visual family tree research tool, was named the best Mac App of the year at the App Store Awards.
Similarly, GoodNotes 5 was awarded the iPad app of the year, TelevisaUnivision Interactive’s Vix streaming service was awarded the top Apple TV app, and Gentler Stories’ Gentler Streak, an exercise and fitness tracker, was awarded the best Apple Watch app of the year at the App Store Awards
Electronic Arts’ Apex Legends Mobile snagged the top iPhone game award, while X.D. Network Inc.’s Moncage got the iPad game award. Other gaming winners include Inscryption from Devolver for Mac, El Hijo from HandyGames for Apple TV, and “Wylde Flowers” from Studio Drydock for Apple Arcade. Shenzhen Tencent Tianyou Technology’s League of Legends Esports Manager won the China app of the year.
In gaming, Apex Legends Mobile was declared as iPhone game of the year, while X.D. Network Inc.’s Moncage got the top iPad game accolade. Inscryption won the Mac game for 2022, El Hijo won the award for the Apple TV category. Wylde Flowers got the Apple Arcade game of the year award, and League of Legends Esports Manager became the China Game for 2022.
Last year, Apple had a bonus section called “Apps that brought us together.” So this year, it has introduced a “Cultural Impact” section to honor some apps that had a “lasting impact on people’s lives and influenced culture” and are selected by the App Store editors.
According to the editors, the selected five Cultural Impact winners that have made a lasting impact on people’s lives and influenced culture are: How we Feel, Dot’s Home from the Rise-Home Stories Project, Locket Widget from Locket Labs, Inc, Waterllama from Vitalii Mogylevets, and Inua-A Story in Ice and Time from ARTE Experience.
App Store has had a challenging 2022 with an impact on revenue and regulatory battles. It had to allow developers to use third-party systems for in-app purchases in regions including South Korea and the Netherlands (just for dating apps).
The U.S. and the EU are also looking at ways to control app distribution monopolies across different app stores. These regulations could force Apple to loosen some rules around allowing app distribution and payments on the App Store.
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