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March 30, 2011

GetJar results confirm a growing appetite for apps

GLOBAL – App distribution company GetJar released some interesting research this week on how people are using apps and their preferences when it comes to how they personalise their mobile phones. They say that more than a third spend an hour or more every day using apps, and over half mobile users use mobile apps more than once a day. (We’ll brush over the stuff about competitor devices – it’s not really appropriate for us to comment).

The survey results stated that:

App usage is clearly on the rise with the survey results showing almost 34 percent of consumers spending one hour or more using apps per day, compared to 49 percent who spend the same amount of time watching television. Fifty-eight percent of survey takers claimed to use mobile apps more than once a day.

If those figures seem a little high, bear in mind it was based on a poll of visitors to GetJar, who would obviously be among the biggest users of mobile apps.

Nonetheless, there’s a strong correlation between GetJar’s results and our own latest results from Ovi Store. The store currently serves more than four million downloads a day from among 35,000 apps. Those are big numbers, but the growth potential remains huge: developers creating apps using Qt currently have a potential market of more than 225 million device owners.

Away from the big numbers, some of the particulars that emerged from our own Appitypes survey are of especial interest. The results say:

  • 71% of people have up to 30 apps on their smartphones, with a fifth (20%) saying that they delete all similar apps from their handset if they hear about a better one.
The figures came from 5000 users in ten countries. Some of the most interesting stats are around how users from different countries vary:
  • The heaviest users come from India where 14% claim to use all of the apps on their phone. They were the nation most likely to use business-focused apps like email-helpers and expense managers;
  • The British seem to be the most appathetic, with a quarter (23%) admitting to hardly ever using any of the apps on their devices. [I suspect this is typical British sangue froid at play myself – the number’s probably higher in reality];
  • Brazilians showed their appreciation for a party with 42% downloading music-related apps including ringtones,  track recognition, and music mags;
  • Germans found functional apps such as alarm clocks and flashlight (29%) the most appealing.
Professor Trevor Pinch, sociologist and Professor of Science and Technology Studies – who worked with us on Appitypes – says:

What is really interesting about this data is that we are seeing app habits in new ways. Two-fifths [43%] of those questioned rely on their apps many times throughout the day – but in different contexts.  The beauty of mobile devices is that they can be used with such versatility – for example, the business person can come home and hand their phone over to their kids to play games on – that they help us to expand our horizons and learn more about the world around us.

What about you? Do these stats mirror the way you use your own device?