The Future of Mobile Apps: Where are we going?
The number of user with access to cell phones continues to rise and consequently so does the market for smart phones. 91% of the United States adult population currently owns a cell phone and of that 91%, 61% use smartphones. Approximately 1 billion smart phones are expected to sell this upcoming year, significantly larger than the number of desktops.
Over 10 billion mobile Internet devices exist in today’s market and will be in use this year. The mobile application industry certainly can see trends emerging and demand increasing. As we continue to monitor the current market, we are figuring out ways to stay ahead of the trends while making a profit; from apps that help you keep track of time, to digital photo frame apps, to apps that even help you find where you parked your car, there are a ton of areas trending in mobile applications.
Breaking Down Current Trends
The trends in mobile development of applications during 2014 have proven to remain in full force this year. Social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, and Instagram are utilizing the market in ways others can’t. These applications are the fastest growing mobile application category at the moment.
Half of the adult population who own smart phones have at least a handful of applications on their devices. 68% report to using them and 57% of users state they use those apps on a regular basis. Many of these people download these applications to make browsing their favorite sites easier, especially social networking. With the applications, there is no need to use web browsing because the application does its best to bring a unique layout that is meant to be viewed on mobile devices. With current statistics, the groups who are more likely to pay for apps are men, adults age 30 and over, college graduates, adults with income of $50,000 or more, and urban dwellers. First step is figuring out the market and demographic the company is aiming to target.
Google’s Android has now passed the 50 billion mark for app downloads and has featured over 1 million apps in the Google Play Store for easy access to its customers. With Apple, 75 billion app downloads have been achieved and the iTunes store currently features 1.2 million different apps. By the upcoming 2017 year, we will see downloads of 268 million and revenues of about $77 billion.
This is the market to be in at this moment.
We as a society value 5 apps: social media, entertainment, communication, productivity, and shopping. With the ever-growing list of social media, these sites are right away putting their employees to work on creating innovative applications to make the mobile experience more efficient and convenient. Entertainment blogs and games are what keeps customers occupied during free periods and some can spend up to 34 minutes a day just using these applications. Email applications such as Gmail, Yahoo, and Outlook have users putting in at least 45 minutes a day on them. With having simple notification alerting your home screen for an incoming email, users are shying away from browser email sites. Keeping their schedules in check, the alarm, weather, calendar, etc. are constantly in use almost all day for the busy office goers or the ones who are constantly on the go. About 33 minutes are put in a day by users for shopping applications like Amazon because these apps can store your payment information, reducing your checkout time to a mere few minutes.
How to Stand Out?
Trends are continuing to emerge and apps are having a harder time standing out from the millions of apps in the store so you will be seeing a larger amount of mobile ads on apps. Take this time to focus on your user and implement strategies to focus on the person’s interests, purchase preferences, and an estimated location to proactively foresee high quality content and personalize their experience. As 2017 approaches, Fitbit active watches, Apple Watches, and other smart watches are coming out which means companies need to be on their top game to make sure mobile apps can transfer to a person’s wearable technology in order to see information processed in new ways.
Ultimately, the target should be to advance the user experience and heighten the product’s features. Mobile developers should be finding the boundaries and figuring out ways to successfully break them to accommodate its users with the apps functions as well as create something memorable to keep them logging in everyday. We’ll be seeing many applications but only the ones that stand out will have that ‘X-Factor,” something about it that innovates, excites, and reaches its users fast. By the year 2020, smart objects like toys, appliances, sports equipment, and medical devices will be mobile-connected.
Innovators need to take the plunge and keep their eyes peeled on the market as well as their target markets. It’s clear that the mobile market is not going anywhere and is just on its way to pushing new design principles, new ways of thinking, and making unimaginable strides. There are no limits!
This guest post was written by Saurab Prabhakar, a creative writer who currently writes on behalf of the digital photo frame experts at Nixplay. He writes creative content and enjoys his work. You’ll find him instructing Group Fitness classes and enjoying great food. You can connect with Saurab on LinkedIn as well as Twitter @saurabspins.