App Annie released its retrospective for the mobile applications market in 2017. Key figures, emerging markets positioning, results by sector of activity, Tops in France, App Annie is combing through a year of all records for the app-economy.
App-economy pushes new limits in 2017
Application downloads exceeded $175 billion worldwide: Users downloaded 60% more applications than in 2015. This corresponds to almost 2 new apps downloaded by each human on Earth and per month.
Consumers spent an average of almost 3 hours a day on apps, i. e. 1.5 months in 2017: The average daily time spent in apps has increased by more than 30% compared to 2015, which is 1.5 hours for the French user.
Consumer spending on apps stores exceeded $86 billion: This growth is fuelled by the massive adoption of smartphones and apps in developing economies.
The average smartphone user has access to nearly 40 apps per month: he has more than 80 apps on his smartphone. On average, this translates into the use of about one-third to one-half of the smartphone apps each month.
The use of apps far exceeds the mobile web in the world: Analysis shows that smartphone users spend 7x more time in native apps than in mobile browsers (87% in France), and tend to access them 13x more often.
Application markets continue to mature
China is the largest application market in terms of time spent: In the 4th quarter of 2017 alone, Chinese users spent 200 billion hours in apps. This is more than 4.5 times the second largest market. China represents enormous opportunities for mobile, with an interest in applications that go beyond mobile games and into communication applications like WeChat. The vast majority of the market is dominated by local publishers.
India surpassed the United States to become the second largest downloading country in 2017: Four of the five countries with the largest downloads are emerging markets. The gradual maturation of these markets, with a population more equipped with smartphones, will generate huge opportunities for monetization.
In mature markets, applications have become a central part of users’ lives. Initial adoption behaviours have stabilized, while commitment and spending continue to increase as users adopt the application reflex.
Focus on France
Top 2017 Applications by Monthly Active Users
- Facebook Messenger
- Whatsapp Messenger
Top 2017 Applications by Consumer Spending
- Google Drive
- Sing ! Karaoke
Retrospective 2017 by application categories
Mobile games remain the main engine of the app-economy
In France alone, consumer spending on game apps increased by 60% compared to 2015. In 2017 it is the Honour of Kings game, developed by Tencent, which has made a spectacular breakthrough on the market, becoming the most popular game in the 4th trismester 2017. This success is mainly due to the huge concentration of users in the vast Chinese market.
Adoption of financial applications is gaining momentum
More and more financial interactions are taking place on mobile platforms, with growth far outstripping that of other applications. Traditional services are already less relevant in the face of instantaneous payments between people, aggregators and the emergence of digital portfolios. Consumers are now demanding immediate and easy-to-use services, such as those offered by Fintech’s ever-growing applications. Finally, the explosion in crypto-money prices has generated a new category of crypto-money management applications.
Shopping apps have become the preferred channels for reaching customers
Digital-first shopping applications have benefited from twice as many monthly average sessions per user in the countries analysed, with more significant growth over the last two years. Mobile shopping had its best month in November 2017 with events such as China’s Singles Day, which gained worldwide recognition. On this occasion, AliExpress finished in 1st place downloads of shopping apps in 69 countries on iPhone and 38 countries on smartphone.
Video streaming: the mobile phone has become screen n°1
Subscription remains a primary source of revenue for entertainment applications, but media applications are increasingly incorporating microtransactions that enhance the visual experience by removing advertising, streaming live TV or allowing viewers to watch it offline. Global growth in this segment was boosted by the installation of Reliance Jio 4G’s 4G network on the huge Indian market, enabling the main suppliers to offer unlimited data packages.
Travel applications have become the ultimate travel companions
Essential interactions with customers are now taking place in mobile applications. In France, the number of sessions in travel applications increased by 70% compared to 2015. The rapid growth in the use of travel applications is a precursor to broader changes in the sector, where digital first continues to shake up traditional players.