An Upper Limit For Apps?
There are now well over a million mobile applications in both Google Play and the iTunes App Store alike, and growth of those app marketplaces shows no sign of slowing down. However, according to new data from Nielsen, there may be an upper limit to how many apps people will interact with over the course of a month, and that number – just over a couple dozen – hasn’t grown much over the past few years.
According to Nielsen, U.S. iPhone and Android users over 18 have been increasing the time they spend using mobile applications, which is up 65 percent over just two years ago. In the last quarter of 2013, for example, users spent 30 hours, 15 minutes using apps per month. That’s a full half-day more than the 18 hours, 18 minutes they spent per month in Q4 2011, the new report notes. […]
What’s interesting is how little the number of apps used per month has changed over this same period of time, however. In Q4 2011, the average number of apps used per month was 23.2. The following year (Q4 2012) it grew to 26.5, and as of Q4 2013 it was just 26.8. […]
Nielsen found that social networking and search apps still dominate the time we spend in smartphone applications - even more so than games – accounting for nearly 11 hours per month as of Q4 2013. Gaming and other entertainment (including video and audio) grew 71 percent year-over-year to account for 10 hours, 34 minutes. […]
Even though older users may not have as much time to spend using apps per month, that usage is still quite significant. For instance, those aged 55+ today spend more than 21 hours across 22 apps per month. It’s this kind of trend that’s having an impact outside of the app universe as well, as apps have begun to eat into the time we would have spent on other leisure activities, like reading books or watching TV.
The question for mobile companies today is no longer just how to get installed, but how to become one of those some half-dozen apps that gets used monthly.