Dec. 20, 2012 at 6:50 PM ET
It's not much of a surprise, but Internet giant Google was at the head of the class for mobile, Web software and Web services during 2012, according to a year-end report from Nielsen.
Android phones outnumbered all iPhones, BlackBerrys, and Windows phones put together in the latest numbers provided by the research firm. Put together with the fact that more smartphones are sold these days than feature phones, it was a big year for both Google and Samsung, which recently surpassed Nokia and Apple as the top smartphone maker.
On phones, Google services were ubiquitous. Google apps made up the first, second, fourth and fifth of the top five installed apps, with Facebook nosing in at No. 3. With between 30 and 50 million users monthly on average, these are high-volume apps indeed.
Google actually took a hit this year when Apple opted not to include YouTube and Google Maps apps in iOS 6. But the lack of a proper YouTube app — until recently — and the highly disappointing Apple Maps have meant a last-minute comeback for Google just in the last few weeks, though that isn't reflected in Nielsen's numbers yet.
Facebook also figured prominently in iOS numbers, and its Messenger app reached a respectable 10 million users per month on average over the year — about a third of what the Facebook app itself gets.
Other notable brands in the top 10s include Pandora radio and Twitter, which both have about 10 million monthly users each on both iOS and Android.
In online video, YouTube maintained a massive lead, with four times the number of monthly visitors — 132 million — as the nearest competitors, Yahoo! and Vevo. It also served far more videos per user: Hulu, the next highest in terms of streams served, sent out about 850 million per month. YouTube averaged 15 billion.
Google remained the top Web brand, Nielsen said, with an average 172 million unique visitors each month between January and October 2012, followed by Facebook, which had an average of 153 million visits each month.
A few more statistics and the rest of the various top 10s can be found at this Nielsen blog post.
Devin Coldewey is a contributing writer for NBC News Digital. His personal website is coldewey.cc.