Comparing Singular Reports to Apple App Store/Google Play

Learn about the reasons Singular reports show different numbers of installs than the Apple App Store/Google Play downloads.

See also: Data Discrepancies Troubleshooting Guide - a guide for comparing Singular reports to your ad network dashboard.

 

Introduction

Singular uses very different methodologies from the Apple App Store or Google Play for counting and reporting app installs. Therefore, you can expect significant discrepancies between app downloads as reported by Apple/Google and app installs as reported by Singular.

Analysis of Differences

To help you understand why it's difficult to compare app store downloads to Singular installs, we've compiled a list of the major methodological differences:

  Singular Behavior
Apple App Store Behavior Google Play Behavior
Download vs. app open Counts an install when the app is first opened. The stores count an install when the app is downloaded, even though the user may never open the app.
Install date Uses the date in which the app is first opened. The stores use the date in which the app is downloaded. The user may not open the app until a later date.
Timezone Installs are reported in the customer's timezone. Installs reported in different timezones depending on the install event's geographic location. Installs are reported in the timezone selected for your account.
Jailbroken devices (iOS)/ other stores & APKs (Android)
Installs are tracked from all app stores and sources. Installs are tracked only for the Apple App Store. Installs are tracked only for Google Play.
User transfers all apps to a new device Singular recognizes the new device as a new install. The App Store does not count a new install because the install occurs under the same iTunes account ID as the old install. Google Play does not count a new install.
One user with multiple devices Installs are tied to the device. If a user installs the app on multiple devices, the install is counted multiple times. Installs are tied to the user's iTunes account. If a user installs the app on multiple devices, the install is counted only once.  
Multiple users with one device Installs are tied to the device. If multiple users install the app on a single device, the install is counted only once. Installs are tied to the user's iTunes account. If multiple users install the app on a single device, the installs are counted multiple times.  

Note: For Android apps, one way to look at how many installs are coming from APKs is to identify which app version is currently live in the Play Store and then look at a given month to see how many installs came from an older version of your app.

Was this article helpful?