It’s not the greatest looking app on the Google Play Store, and many may even be using a replacement app instead of the stock version, but Gmail is the most popular app on Android. The official Gmail app has become the first Play Store app to reach the 1 billion downloads mark.

As per Android Police, the significant rise of Android smartphones has played a crucial role in the app reaching the milestone. Facebook, YouTube and even Google Search have more active users than Gmail, but the app, which is pre-installed on most Android phones, has won out.

Google counts only unique accounts that downloaded the Gmail app. But this doesn’t mean that the app has 1 billion regular users. Some may choose to use the stock email app instead of Gmail. The total has also taken into consideration duplicate and abandoned accounts.

Image: Appbrain
Over a billion downloads (Image: Appbrain)

Gmail is not the first app to reach a billion downloads. Google Play Services crossed 1 billion before Gmail, but it’s not an app per se and cannot be ‘donwloaded’. Play Services comes pre-installed on every Android smartphone, which has Google-approved software. Gmail, on the other hand, can be uninstalled by users, if it’s not a system app. Some manufacturers or Android custom ROMs don’t even include Gmail in their default builds, which is why Gmail is officially the first app to cross the mark.

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