Here’s what you need to know about the South Korean app market for the week of September 1st.
With a quick glance at both Google Play and the App Store rankings, the word KakaoTalk is almost impossible to miss. KakaoTalk, the most popular instant messaging app in South Korea, also offers a gaming platform in which the majority of top-rank games are played. In 2013, 84% of Kakao’s revenue came from “commissions”, primarily earnings from games. Kakao is likely to continue dominating South Korean App charts, as it keeps expanding their offerings to new areas, such as the recently launched KakaoPay.
Top 5 Free Apps (As of Sep 03, 2014)
1. Doogeun-doogeun Restaurant for Kakao
Released on August 24th, “Dogeundogeun Restaurant” is a restaurant operation strategy game on Kakao, developed by WeMade Entertainment. Korean celebrity Seok Cheon Hong, owner of multiple successful restaurants in Seoul, was the source of inspiration for the overall theme. Players can purchase in-app items in order to buy special items. It has recorded over 500,000 downloads.
2. Reversed! Table Tennis Matjjang-K for Kakao
Initially launched on August 23rd, “Reversed!” is a table tennis game on Kakao developed by AfreecaTV. Players can challenge their friends on social networks (currently integrates Naver’s BAND) on a match of 3D table tennis. Players can upgrade their characters by adding various techniques that become progressively available. It has recorded over 100,000 downloads.
3. Police Office Pol –Antispy
Launched on August 26th, the utility app checks your smartphone for any spywares and deletes them when found. The issue of cyber security has escalated in Korea, especially after recent cyber attacks that impacted the entire country. As a solution, the National Police Agency for Cyber Security developed the app, which has recorded over 100,000 downloads since its initial launch.
4. KakoTalk: Free Calls & Texts
KakaoTalk is the number one mobile messenger in Korea with over 100 million downloads since its initial launch in 2012.
5. Facebook Messenger
Messenger has now been made required for Facebook chat on mobile devices. Since its initial launch in 2011, it has recorded over 500 million downloads.
1. Facebook Messenger
2. The Tower
Launched on August 27th, The Tower is a tower-building arcade game, where players tap the screen to layer construction blocks as tall and in balance as they can. The game was developed by Ketchapp, mainly known for its hit game ‘2048’.
3. KakaoTalk Messenger
4. “Legion of Heroes” for Kakao
Published by Korea’s major game publisher giant NEXON Company, “Legion of Heroes” is a multiplayer combat mobile RPG. The second closed beta version concluded on June 30th.
5. Woori Bank – One-touch personal banking
Released by Woori Bank, one of the biggest banks in Korea, the finance app provides smart banking services. In a country where online payment requires multiple security authentication steps, the app helps simplify transactions for small sums of money.