When Snap Inc (née Snapchat) unveiled its video camera-equipped Spectacles on Friday, one of the more common reactions was very simple: Why? Why would a startup behind a popular photo sharing app suddenly get into hardware?
Well, as this chart from Statista shows, that app isn’t just popular – it’s an outlier. Judging in terms of average unique monthly visitors as of this past July, 11 of the top 15 apps in the US come from Facebook, Google, Amazon, or Apple. The only exceptions? Pandora, Pokémon Go (which is already dipping), Pinterest, and, yes, Snapchat, in 14th with 54.1 million users.
At a time when people simply aren’t downloading new apps, and when the overwhelming majority of app revenue goes toward the top 1% of publishers, that kind of success isn’t easy for a non-giant to maintain. It could also explain why that company feels comfortable selling a product that’s most reminiscent of Google Glass.