Why Mobile App Usage Is On The Rise
Mobile apps are infiltrating many areas of modern life, changing habits for consumers and business users alike as their influence grows.
The question, then, is what makes software solutions designed for smartphones so effective and appealing, especially in comparison to equivalent services either offered in-browser or via traditional desktop devices?
Mobile apps are immensely flexible, catering to every niche from managing finances to playing casino games online.
There are almost 3 million apps on the Google Play store alone, and as mobile hardware becomes more powerful, the features and abilities that they offer are also improving.
For example, more and more enterprise-oriented apps are taking advantage of augmented reality (AR) on portable devices to empower workers in industries as varied as warehousing and healthcare.
The diversity of the mobile app market is not the only key to its growth, just as the potency of individual smartphones is just one aspect of what makes the entire marketplace so exciting at the moment.
The arrival of 5G networking, in combination with the chipsets that support it, is giving rise to a new era of superfast connectivity on portable devices that means that apps can do much more than before.
Indeed the reality of a 5G world is that apps need no longer be beholden to the number-crunching capabilities of a mobile phone, but can instead leverage the near-unlimited power of the cloud to deliver jaw dropping experiences to users in real time, without issues with input lag causing consternation as in the past.
Convenience & Consistency
When using a mobile browser to access an online site or service, there is no guarantee that the experience will be up to scratch, because of the sheer number of hardware configurations that need to be accounted for and the way that suboptimal design is still an issue, even in a mobile-first era.
Apps, on the other hand, are far more reliably able to meet and even exceed expectations that users hold in terms of consistent performance and of course convenience. App store operators can explicitly prevent downloads to devices that will not support the features of a given app, which helps to avoid disappointment.
Furthermore, apps offer additional conveniences and capabilities that are relevant in times of crisis, and this trend is only going to be catalysed by current events.
Apps are increasingly used as the window through which people communicate with one another. This not only applies to personal messages sent to and from friends and family, but also to business communications carried out over IM, conference or video calling solutions.
Social media is another huge influence over the increase in app usage, with average smartphone owners spending over 2 hours flicking through apps in this category on a daily basis. This is a snapshot of a global trend which is changing the way communications is handled at almost every level, and as the likes of WhatsApp, Instagram and TikTok balloon in user numbers, the effects will be even more pronounced.
In the past decade, smartphone ownership has increased rapidly and around 3.5 billion people now use devices which fall into this category.
Apps are an appealing option for all smartphone owners because they make services available without the usual hurdles that need to be overcome to access them in other contexts.
For example, apps which require network connectivity to function can be used whether via Wi-Fi or through cellular coverage. This liberates users from the limitations of fixed line connectivity. Meanwhile portability means that apps are always there, ready to be used at a moment’s notice, becoming a compulsion in some cases, cementing their increased importance.
This article has been published in accordance with Socialnomics’s disclosure policy.