There are almost 7.8 billion people in the world, over 40% of which own a smartphone. In 2019, mobile users were spending 90% of their mobile time using apps. Add to that, the 1.35 billion people worldwide using tablets and you’ve got a very large captive audience ready to interact with your product, which makes 2020 a great time to be an app developer.
If you want to take advantage of this multi-billion dollar opportunity, you need to have a clear understanding of the latest 2020 smartphone statistics.
Mobile App Downloads
In 2008, there were just 500 apps on Apple’s App Store. 10 years later, there were over 20 million registered iOS developers and over 500 million weekly visitors to the App Store. Whilst those figures sound great, it’s no good having a mobile app if no one downloads it.
By the end of 2019, there were over 204 billion annual app downloads across the iOS App Store, Google Play, and third-party Android stores. This figure is expected to grow year-on-year. It’s predicted that between 2018 and 2022, there will be a whopping 25% increase in app downloads worldwide.
Paid vs. Free Apps
We’re going to take a wild guess and say you’re making mobile app to make money. Think back to your own app download history… how many apps have you downloaded that you’ve had to pay for, versus how many you’ve downloaded that are free.
98% of worldwide app revenue comes from free apps. How on earth do free apps make money? There are plenty of monetization opportunities when it comes to marketing apps. In an online survey of over 1200 respondents, 49% of mobile app professionals used in-app advertising for non-gaming apps and 79% of gaming app users purchased in-app items.
Google Play Store vs. App Store
3.8% of Google Play and 9.2% of iOS apps are paid. According to Lifewire, the Google Play store has more than double the number of downloads compared to the iOS App Store, however, the App Store makes twice as much money.
Despite this, both stores are seeing a continued upward trend in the number of downloads year-on-year. Between 2017 and 2018, Google Play Store downloads increased by 14%, and the App Store increased by 3%.
App Store Download Statistics
Apple App Store’s most popular download category in June 2020 was games, with over 22% of the total. Business apps were the second-most popular category with a share of 10.1%, followed closely by Education and Lifestyle with just over 8%.
It’s easy for app marketers to be put off by these figures, as many business owners don’t have an interest in the gaming market. But, this doesn’t mean you need to create a gaming app to be successful. In fact, the most popular download categories have more competition, so are harder to penetrate.
App Store Availability Statistics
As of January 2017, there were 2,200,000 available apps on the App Store. This trend has continued to grow, with a large jump between 2015 to 2016.
The app market is incredibly competitive, and this isn’t going to change any time soon. With more people owning mobiles and more apps being downloaded than ever before, it makes sense that more apps are available on the market.
Google Play Download Statistics
App success can be determined, not only by app category downloads but also by penetration. As of September 2019, tools had the highest percentage reach among global Android mobile users with 99.81%.
Tools cover a wide variety of apps, including cleanup software like Avast and CCleaner, as well as Emoji keyboards and speed checkers to monitor your web hosting performance, mobile usage checkers, alarm clocks, and lots more.
Communication comes in a close second at 99.39%, then business at 99.33%. Other popular categories include video players and editing tools, travel, social, and productivity.
However, with Android devices, it’s important to remember that many apps like Messenger, come pre-installed.
Google Play Availability Statistics
In July 2013, the Google Play Store surpassed 1 million apps. In June 2020, this figure was 2.96 million apps.
However, unlike Apple’s App Store trends, the Google Play Store saw a dip in available apps between March 2018 to March 2019. Both stores are highly competitive, however, the Google Play leads in this area, making it even harder for apps to survive.
Mobile App Usage
Most people spend around 2 hours and 51 minutes on their mobile devices each day. The majority of that time is spent using apps, with an average of 60 to 90 apps installed on each person’s smartphone. But if you think back to how many apps you actually use on your phone, the statistics can differ.
75% of apps are used once, maybe twice, after being downloaded, then never used again. 77% of mobile user’s time is spent on their top 3 apps, where 96% of the time is spent on their top 10 apps.
71% of app users churn within the first 3 months of download an app, whereas only 29% are retained. People are more likely to stop using an app if they encounter flaws, glitches, bugs, or other issues. However, offering regular updates and fixes will ensure your app continues to offer good user experience and a higher retention rate.
Most Popular Apps
Social media apps are among the most popular apps in the world, with Facebook dominating the market. In fact, Facebook own four of the top five most popular apps, including WhatsApp, Messenger, and Instagram:
- WhatsApp Messenger
- Facebook Messenger
China takes the crown for the biggest app market, which is why half of the above list features many Chinese apps.
Although we’ve only scratched the surface regarding 2020s smartphone statistics, it’s clear to see just how big the mobile and mobile app industry is.
Mobile usage seems to be at an all-time high, yet is predicted to increase and continue its upward trend in 2021 and beyond.
If you have or are developing a mobile app or are wondering how you’re going to market it, these statistics should fill you with confidence and encourage you to continue on your journey.