Smartphone apps are fast becoming the go-to resources for content consumption. A new study by research enterprise eMarketer shows that users in the United States are increasingly opting for contained experiences in dedicated applications rather than surfing the web on mobile.
The study found that people have spent 85.7 per cent of their time on smartphones each day in-app compared to a rather paltry 14.3 per cent on mobile web in 2016. The huge rise in mobile app activity is being driven by the consumption of social media and messaging platforms, news articles and videos and productivity apps.
This means that US adults will spend an estimated one hour and 54 minutes a day browsing apps on mobile devices, which is a seven-minute rise compared to last year. In contrast, the amount of time spent on the web using smartphones has fallen slightly from 21 minutes a day in 2015 to 19 minutes this year.
“Mobile apps are easily accessible and can be launched faster than the mobile web,” eMarketer’s Forecasting Director, Monica Peart, said. “Apps also provide an immersive experience with a greater degree of functionality, integrating with the device’s other apps and capabilities such as GPS, the camera and even the contact list. These elements keep users more engaged in each session.”
Video content is one of the main reasons why smartphone usage has soared recently, with data showing that it has now overtaken desktop as the prime platform for viewing clips. Adults in the US are now expected to watch videos for around 15 minutes a day, and this figure is expected to rise steadily through 2018 and beyond.
The fact that there are no signs of mobile consumption slowing down is largely due to a growing population of smartphone users. Just over 73 per cent of the 184.1 million adults in the US now use pocket mobile devices, but this is expected to rise to almost 80 per cent in just two years’ time.
Mobile app messaging usage is expected to soar during that time too. The data from eMarketer shows that adults spend five minutes on these apps each day — a 146.4 per cent rise compared to 12 months ago. It currently accounts for three per cent of all in-app time but is expected to jump to 8.4 per cent by 2018. Social network usage is also tipped to rise.