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Google and Facebook Dominate 90% of All Time Spent on Apps

On the 24 August, ComScore released its 2017 US Mobile App Report and its findings offer deep insight into the digital trends of people across all age ranges. Not only did they look at the break-up of how much time we spend on each platform, be that desktop, mobile or tablet, but they also researched how much time is spent on apps within each of those sources. The results are both intriguing and worrying at the same time, depending on your view of the growing dependence on apps within our society.

What are we up to?

First, here is a quick overview of how much time is spent on each platform comparatively. Findings show that those aged 65 and above are the only people still using desktop more than mobile (roughly 53%); whereas 18-24-year-olds spend a mere 23% of the time on desktop. Instead, the average time spent on smartphone apps is 50% across the board, and another 7% spent on smartphone web. Use of tablet apps comes in at around 7% on average.

Which Industries do Apps Dominate?

As we can see, smartphone apps take up roughly half of our time spent in the digital environment, but now let’s look at which industries are now dominated by the use of apps. Photo, music, instant messaging and maps all see at least 95% of their activity coming through app usage. Time spent social networking, playing games, checking the weather and performing other personal services come via the use of apps between 70-85% of the time. 47% of our time is spent exploring retail products through apps.

Who Owns Our Time?

It should be quite clear that apps dominate much of the standard day-to-day activities which we perform, but things really get interesting when we look at specifically which apps control this time, and who owns them. Here are the top 8 apps used by each age bracket, and in decreasing order of usage.

18-24

– YouTube
– Facebook
– Snapchat
– Facebook Messenger
– Instagram
– Google Search
– Google Maps
– Pandora

25-34

– Facebook
– YouTube
– Facebook Messenger
– Instagram
– Google Maps
– Snapchat
– Google Search
– Pandora

35-54

– Facebook
– YouTube
– Facebook Messenger
– Google Search
– Google Maps
– Google Play
– Instagram
– Gmail

55+

– Facebook
– Google Search
– Facebook Messenger
– YouTube
– Google Maps
– Google Play
– Apple News
– Gmail

This list leads to a few noticeable points, mainly that for every single age range at least 6 of the top 8 apps are owned by either Google or Facebook. If you are aged 55 or above, this number extends to 7 out of the top 8, with Google holding 6 of those positions. Further research into these numbers found that about 50% of our time is spent on the number one app and between 87-89% of all user app time was spent on the top 5 apps.

What Else was Revealed?

The study found that across the board, 51% of all users haven’t downloaded a single new app within the last month. This demonstrates that users are well entrenched in their current positions and prefer to dominate their usage time with a select few favourite apps. A final point to note is that, compared to the results from the 2016 survey, the willingness to allow app push notifications has risen from 27% to 43%. Those percentages are combined totals of users surveyed who said they would either allow push notifications either “always” or “often”.

If you wish to find out more about the report and to take a deeper look at the findings, you can head over to ComScore and download the full report here.

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