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Mobile App Usage Growing as Users Spend 3 Hours Per Day in Apps

The mobile app economy is growing in terms of downloads, total sessions, and total time spent within apps.

People are downloading more apps, adopting new apps at a faster rate, and spending more time within apps according to data from a new report.

App Annie published a comprehensive report, which was commissioned by Facebook, looking at the evolution of the mobile app market over the past 5 years.

Growth has been tremendous, to say the least, as the average consumer now spends over one-fourth of their waking life in apps.

As the mobile app market matures and use cases increase, 2020 is shaping up to be its biggest year yet.

The market has never been more diverse, as the top 100 apps consist of many new entrants, categories, and companies.

In fact, the competition has increased so much that the top apps now make up a smaller proportion of time spent than they did 5 years ago.

New apps are rapidly gaining traction. More apps are achieving one million monthly active users and getting to one million downloads faster.

In 2019, the average global user had 93 apps installed on their phone and used 41 apps per month, up from 85 and 35 respectively in 2015.

Here are some additional highlights from the report, which examines mobile app trends in the US and worldwide.

2020 Mobile App Trends

Growth in Time Spent

Users are downloading more apps and spending more time engaging with apps.

This indicates growth in total time spent is driven by more overall users, as well as more time spent per user per day.

In 2019, users spent 3.1 hours per day in apps on average, compared to 2.1 hours 5 years ago.

New Apps Can Still Gain Traction

Data shows the mobile app market is relatively friendly to new entrants.

There are several new entrants to the list of top 100 most downloaded apps each year that were not in the list the previous year.

In 2019, 35 of the top 100 apps were new entrants, up from 27 in 2016.

App Annie recommends that companies continually invest and innovate to stay competitive and relevant in the app market.

“In the USA, a newly launched app — if it has potential — can typically find success relatively early on. Over 60% of apps are able to reach their Category Top 30 in the first 6 months.”

The App Market is Diverse

The list of top 100 apps is comprised of a mix of company types and app categories.

Diversity in app categories is attributed to the fact that users are comfortable downloading and using apps in different ways than before.

“Growth across differing app categories suggest that users are continually seeking new apps for different use cases.”

Users Are Spending Less Time With Top Apps

Users are spending less time with the most popular apps, and engaging more with less popular apps.

“Top 30 apps make up a smaller proportion of time spent now than they did 5 years ago, indicating that users are deepening engagement with apps outside the top apps.”

App Annie notes that this continues to be true in 2020 even after app engagement increased due to COVID-19.

For even more data on mobile app trends, see the full report here.

SEJ STAFF Matt G. Southern Senior News Writer at Search Engine Journal

Matt G. Southern, Senior News Writer, has been with Search Engine Journal since 2013. With a bachelor’s degree in communications, ...

Mobile App Usage Growing as Users Spend 3 Hours Per Day in Apps

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