It’s an App World on Smart Devices

Source: Thinkstock

Source: Thinkstock

So what do you do on your smartphone or tablet? Chances are you’re more likely to spend that time using apps than surfing the mobile web. Apps have grown significantly in the past six years. However, that growth comes at the expense of the mobile web finds a new study released on Tuesday by mobile measurement and advertising platform Flurry.

Flurry collects the data for its research from its network of over 450,000 mobile applications installed on more than 1.3 billion devices, as noted in TechCrunch’s story on the report. The results come from analyzing that huge pool of data to find the trends. The results were shared in a blog post written by Flurry’s CEO and President Simon Khalaf.

Khalaf writes that apps are a clear leader in smartphone and tablet usage. “The data tells a clear story that apps, which were considered a mere fad a few years ago, are completely dominating mobile, and the browser has become a single application swimming in a sea of apps,” he writes in the post.

Smartphone use is up, as the proliferation of iPhones and Androids over that same six years shows. Tablet use has also expanded in recent years. Apps benefit the most from the popularity of iPhones and Androids alike. The average smartphone user spends about 2.7 hours on their devices a day from data collected from January through March 2014. About 86 percent of that time, about 2.3 hours, is spent using mobile apps. This is an increase from a report released in March of last year when users spent just around 2.3 hours on their smartphones total, with 80 percent of time spent on mobile apps.

How we spend that time in our apps is split between gaming, Facebook, and other apps. Facebook dominates app usage in the report, with about 17 percent of total time spent on a device being devoted to using its family of apps alone, including Instagram. Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) also makes about 18 percent of mobile advertising revenue in 2013 the report noted, citing eMarketer. The remaining time is spent on the mobile web, the use of which has been shrinking as apps have grown. The most commonly used mobile browsers when users access the mobile web are Apple Safari and Google Chrome, the research found.

The research is a follow-up to a five-year report on the mobile industry issued by Flurry in 2013 to mark the fifth anniversary of the initial release of the iPhone. That 2013 research declared that it’s an app world on smart devices. Mobile web occupies the space as a distant second. The dominance of gaming apps was also noted in that report, which is hardly a surprise when so many of the top paid, free, and top grossing apps are games.

If current trends continue, the post projects that app usage will continue to rise as the app market continues to expand at the expense of the mobile web.

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