Games, social networking dominate 79% of consumers’ total app time

Posted by Friedrick on March 12, 2013 in Great Articles, Mobile Apps

March 11, 2013 | By

As goes Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), so goes the growth of the broader mobile app industry, according to a recent report from Flurry.

“Consumers spend nearly half their time using games and a third in social networking apps,” Flurry said. “Further, considering that Flurry does not track Facebook usage, the Social Networking category is actually larger. Combined, from just what Flurry can see, these two categories control a whopping 79 percent of consumers’ total app time. This breakdown in usage reveals Facebook’s inherent popularity as the leading social network, as well as how important controlling the game category is for all platform providers.”

The analytics firm created a model based on its own software, which tracks sessions across 140,000 applications, and integrated it with publicly available data from comScore and Alexa as the basis for its report. Flurry noted that the shift from primarily desktop use of the Web and applications to smartphones and tablets has significantly accelerated since 2011. However, the good news is that efforts around engagement may be starting to pay off: Flurry is seeing an increase in the overall number of sessions, even if the average length of sessions has gone down.

What most of these connected consumers are doing, of course, is checking status updates and trying to improve their scores.

Flurry found that social networking and games dominate almost 80 percent of users’ time.

Flurry attributes Facebook’s success to its decision to treat its service as a platform for gaming apps, a move it described as a “disintermediation challenge to Apple,” since users don’t’ have to launch the iOS version of some games anymore. Despite launching its own Google+ (NASDAQ:GOOG) social networking service, meanwhile, Flurry believes Facebook is also outwitting its app store competitor by launching news feeds and Graph Search which may help consumers find what they need without using a more traditional search engine.

The data could be useful to developers as they try to better prioritize their platform strategies. Although there is probably room for growth in any of the big three players today, Flurry is showing that certain categories of apps have a better chance of capitalizing on the changes in mainstream mobile usage.

“Any way we slice it, Games and Social Networking apps deliver the most engaging experience on the Web and mobile today and set the stage for the battleground for controlling the consumer relationship going forward for all platform providers on all platforms,” Flurry said.

For more
- read the full Flurry report

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