Flappy Bird is the number one free game for the iPhone and for Android phones. It’s a simple game. You tap on the screen to make the bird fly, or flap, and you try to guide the bird through two green tubes. The graphics look like something from the original Nintendo, which was inspiration for the game.
Flappy Bird generates revenue through banner ads.
Nguyen, based in Vietnam, launched the app in May of 2013. For reasons he doesn’t fully understand the app just took off and has suddenly become super popular. Today, it has 50 million downloads.
For some context on the success of Flappy Bird, in the U.S. App Store, Facebook’s new Paper app is number three, sitting behind Flappy Bird, and a game just like Flappy Bird called Ironpants. Facebook has 147 million monthly U.S. users. It dominated in press coverage for Paper. And yet, it still can’t beat some goofy app made by a Vietnamese developer in his free time.