ChatGPT Dominates Downloads But Faces Revenue Competition

Oct 31, 2023

OpenAI’s AI chatbot, ChatGPT, continues to dominate the mobile download market, outstripping other AI chatbot apps. Despite this, it lags behind a few of its competitors when it comes to revenue generation. A number of photo AI apps and other AI chatbots have managed to surpass the earnings of ChatGPT, even though it has firmly established itself as a go-to name in the AI chat experience.

ChatGPT’s mobile app made its debut in May this year and has seen an impressive growth trajectory in both downloads and revenue. In its inaugural month, only available on iOS, the app achieved 3.9 million downloads, which ballooned to 15.1 million by June, according to an AI app market analysis by Apptopia. After a slight dip in July, ChatGPT bounced back, topping 23 million downloads as of September 2023.

The app’s usage mirrored its download growth, with monthly active users skyrocketing from just over 1.34 million in May to nearly 39 million in September. The app’s consumer spending followed suit, starting at $352,929 during its launch month and reaching nearly $2.39 million by October 24, the end date for the current data set.

Despite these impressive numbers, ChatGPT isn’t the highest earner in the AI chatbot space. Apps such as “Chat & Ask AI” and “ChatOn — AI Chat Bot Assistant” surpassed ChatGPT’s revenue in September, pulling in nearly $3.38 million and $2.11 million respectively. Other competitors, like “AI Chatbot — Nova” and “AI Chatbot: AI Chat Smith”, are also hot on ChatGPT’s heels.

The mobile platform is a competitive space for AI chatbots, with at least five apps exceeding 2 million downloads in September. Many of these are generically named apps like “Chat & Ask AI,” “ChatOn — AI Chat Bot Assistant,” “AI Chatbot — Nova,” and “AI Chatbot: AI Chat Smith.” They seem to benefit from App Store SEO, ranking highly for common search terms like “AI Chat.” While their download numbers still fall short of ChatGPT’s 23 million, they indicate a robust market for AI apps beyond OpenAI’s creation.

Moreover, backed by a16z, the chatbot startup is also in the race with 2.39 million downloads as of September. This app enables users to interact with and create their own AI personas.

These apps not only have high download numbers but also boast a significant active user base. For instance, Poe, a chatbot app from Q&A site Quora, reported over 1.18 million monthly active users (MAUs) in September, compared to ChatGPT’s nearly 39 million MAUs.

The competition doesn’t end with chatbots. AI photo apps, which utilize AI technologies for editing effects or personalized images, operate in an adjacent space and are giving ChatGPT a run for its money across metrics such as downloads, usage, and in-app purchase revenue.

In spite of the stiff competition, with 23 million downloads in September, ChatGPT continues to lead the pack. However, viral apps like “Remini” are inching closer to ChatGPT’s installation numbers, making the AI app market an exciting space to watch.