The use of mobile apps in 2016 and forecasts for mobile app development in 2017

January 24th, 2017

According to Flurry analytics, the usage of mobile apps is continuously growing, but some statistics show that it has grown by 11% in 2016, which is slower than the usage growth of the previous year (the growth was a stunning 58% in 2015).  So, in fact the usage of mobile apps is possibly slowing down, or at least the usage of some of the types of apps is slowing down while that of others is growing.


mobile app development


The problem with the abundance and variety of the millions of Android and Apple apps is that now it is very difficult for the mobile app developers to develop a new app which will win over the users and take their attention away from the existing mobile apps they are currently using. This is especially true for the most popular mobile apps for 2016, such as: Facebook, Instagram, Gmail, Google, Messenger, Apple Music, Amazon and others.

Flurry actually tracks nearly 950,000 apps on more than 2 billion devices and 3 billion sessions, which gives it the ability to provide mobile app developers and business owners with deep insight in the app ecosystem at any given time.

Even though the general mobile app usage growth has showed some slowing down as compared to previous years, the time which users are spending in mobile apps is growing rapidly, with over 69% as compared to 2015.

The most commonly used mobile apps are those for social networking and messaging. The use of such apps has soared up by 44% as compared to 2015, and the usage time has grown by an impressive 394% as compared to last year.

This growth is mainly due to the faster mobile internet, the wide variety of smartphones and smart devices, and the various options for free voice and video calling online. Plus, now the children who grew up with smartphones are now growing up and using their own smartphones intensively. Another factor which has inspired this growth is the newly developed need for sharing and private socializing among users.

Other apps which have become more popular and used in 2016 are business, finance, sports and the mobile cashback and shopping apps.

The decrease in the usage is noticeable in the personalization category as well as in game apps.

But the overall tendency of people choosing to use mobile apps and mobile web more, as well as the oversaturated mobile app market is making the work of mobile app developers and new startups much more difficult. There is a big possibility that new businesses and startups will need to use alternative methods to reach their potential customers by spamming contact lists, more VC backed apps and M&A activities.

The companies behind the leading mobile app platforms: Google, Apple, Microsoft and others are already looking for possible next platforms which cover the growing use of other smart devices, such as smart wearables, smart TVs, etc.

Also, the tendencies are pointing at the growing popularity of voice computing, which means that it is very possible that Amazon will be moving towards its own app ecosystem, thanks to its useful Alexa assistant and other connected apps and that other companies will be relying on voice computing for their future apps.


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