Apple Announces 2023 App Store Award Winners, Hiking App AllTrails Named iPhone App of the Year

Apple has announced the winners of the 2023 App Store Awards, listing the 14 best apps and games across different categories. Fitness-focussed hiking and biking app AllTrails has emerged as the best app on iPhone this year, while miHoYo’s latest RPG gacha title Honkai: Star Rail has been named as the iPhone Game of the Year. Other winners include machine learning-powered editing app Photomator, souls-like action RPG Lies of P, and curated film streaming platform Mubi. Last month, Apple had announced a list of 40 finalists, based on their technical and creative achievements, for its annual App Store Awards.

AllTrails beat competition from the likes of language coaching app Duolingo and flight tracking app Flighty for the title of iPhone App of the Year. The app includes detailed guides and maps for hiking trails around the world. For 2023’s best game on iPhone, Honkai: Star Rail was picked over the roguelike sensation Vampire Survivors and retro RPG Afterplace.

“This year’s winners represent the limitless potential of developers to bring their visions to life, creating apps and games with remarkable ingenuity, exceptional quality, and purpose-driven missions,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said in the newsroom post announcing the 2023 App Store Awards winners.

On iPad, digital makeup sketch pad app Prêt-à-Makeup was named as app of the year. The app’s Face charts feature is helps makeup artists test out, plan, or register looks and combinations. On the gaming side, puzzle adventure title Lost in Play triumphed over Eggy Party and Pocket City 2 to emerge as the best iPad game of 2023.

On Mac, photo editing software Photomator was named app of the year, while critically acclaimed souls-like action RPG Lies of P won in the gaming category, beating competition from open-world RPG title ELEX II and classic point-and-click adventure title Return to Monkey Island.

Rounding up other Apple platforms, workouts app SmartGym and streaming platform Mubi emerged as the best apps on Apple Watch and Apple TV, respectively. Cozy adventure title Hello Kitty Island Adventure was named as the best game on Apple Arcade, the company’s subscription-based gaming service.

In addition to apps and games on all its devices, Apple also recognised five winners in Cultural Impact category, which acknowledges apps and games that spread a positive message. “This year’s winners encouraged users to learn and grow in an inclusive and accessible space, contribute toward a more sustainable future, and explore self-reflection and connection across generations,” Apple’s post read. Cultural Impact winners include digital toy room for kids Pok Pok, accessibility app Proloquo, surplus food sustainability app Too Good to Go, meditative puzzle app Unpacking, coming-of-age, hidden-object game Finding Hannah.

Apple also recognised generative AI apps as the trend of the year. From chatbots to planners, AI-powered apps have flooded the App Store over the past year. “Although many features are still in their infancy, they gave users a chance to see, firsthand, the technology in action and come to their own conclusions about the benefits and risks,” the company said in the post.

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