Apple’s App Store recently hit its 50 billionth download. Since its launch in July 2008, the store has been the go-to place for mobile apps. To this day, mobile developers often choose to release their apps here first. Popular from the start, just seven months after the App Store’s launch, the store surpassed one million third party apps, many of those free.
Alongside its most recent and successful numbers, Apple released a list of its most 25 most-downloaded free iPhone apps of all time. A greatest hits list if you will from the past five years, the list contains a few apps you might expect — such as Facebook and Pandora — as well as a few you might not realize were so widely popular.
Check out Apple’s list in the gallery below, and let us know your favorite free iPhone apps in the comments.
Facebook’s app gives you full access to the social network, where you can upload photos and status messages, check out your News Feed and friends' profiles, and send messages to people either via instant message or email.
2. Pandora Radio
Pandora’s mobile app makes it easy to rock out, no matter where you are. Create radio stations and listen to ad-supported tunes for free for 40 hours a month. If you reach the 40-hour cap, continue listening for the remainder of the month for $0.99.
Instagram improves the look of your mobile photos. Give your image a vintage or professional look with the app's built-in filters.
Where can you catch the latest cat video, plus a message from the president in the same place? YouTube’s app makes it easy to stream the videos you love directly to your mobile phone.
Keeping in touch has never been so easy. With Skype, contact with friends and family around the world. The app supports voice and video calls, as well as texting, in many cases for free.
6. Words With Friends Free
Words With Friends Free is the ad-supported version of the Scrabble-like game by Zynga. In the game you can compete against your Facebook friends, others using the service and strangers.
7. The Weather Channel
The Weather Channel’s app gives you accurate, up-to-the-minute weather conditions for your area and beyond, as well as a forecast for the future.
Twitter’s mobile app ports much of the functionality of the web network to mobile. From the app you can explore tweets, see what’s trending and post your own tweets to add to the conversation. The app also allows you to tweet photos, and has a built-in photo editor for making those pictures look their best.
9. Temple Run
Temple Run put infinite-runner games on the map. In the game, run until you can’t run any longer while dodging obstacles. Since the launch of this original game, the studio has put out a sequel, Temple Run 2, as well as Brave and Oz-themed versions, in partnership with Disney.
10. Google Search
Need to look something up? Google Search is the ultimate app for performing web searches on your iPhone.
Whether you want to watch a quick episode of your favorite television show, or settle in and watch a feature-length film, Netflix’s app makes it easy to stream TV shows and movies to the palm of your hand. Use of the app requires a subscription to Netflix’s streaming service.
12. Shazam for iPhone
What’s that song? Shazam’s app identifies the music playing around you.
13. Angry Birds Free
Who doesn’t love Angry Birds? This free version of the high-flying game is ad-supported, allowing you to play for free.
14. Draw Something Free
Pictionary goes mobile with Draw Something. Draw a picture, then send it to your friend so he or she can guess what you drew. Originally launched by OMGPOP, the game was later acquired by Zynga.
Having trouble finding your way around? Flashlight turns your phone into a mobile light, brightening up the area around you so you can locate items in the dark.
16. Facebook Messenger
Facebook Messenger is the messaging portion of Facebook, broken off into its own standalone application. The app also contains Chat Heads, a unique way of conversing with your friends -- their faces appear in small circles on the screen.
17. Google Earth
Want to take a quick trip to Paris? How about to the house where you grew up? Google Earth lets you see the world through Google’s cameras, giving you a bird’s-eye view of the earth as a whole, and a close-up view of any location you choose – all in the palm of your hand.
18. Fruit Ninja Free
With Fruit Ninja, slice and dice fruits as they fly across the screen. The more fruit you're able to chop while avoiding obstacles, the higher your score.
Miss your radio station from back home? iHeartRadio lets you tune in to listen to Clear Channel radio stations around the country, all from your mobile phone.
20. Movies by Flixster, With Rotten Tomatoes
Want to know whether that latest movie is a must-see? Flixter’s app with Rotten Tomatoes makes it easy to read reviews, while you’re on your way to the theater.
Want to transfer a photo from your phone to a friend? How about some cash? Bump lets you tap two phones to transfer data. Or use the app along with your computer, for transferring images from your phone to PC.
Whether you’re buying or selling, eBay’s mobile app has the tools to help you get things done. The app makes it easy to list items for sale, as well as bid on items you might want to own.
23. PAC-MAN Lite
Pac-Man comes to the iPhone in this free version of the popular arcade game.
Groupon’s mobile app lets you purchase deals while you’re out and about. You can score bargains – often 50% off or more -- on restaurants and attractions while you’re at them, no planning required.
25. Google Maps
Although Apple removed Google Maps from iOS, the mobile app made a splash when it returned to the App Store. Unlike Apple’s built-in Maps, Google Maps offers public transit information.