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Articles that help business to keep up to a fast paced world

What happens to the other 92% ?

By Terry Billingsley posted February 4, 2017

There are many who feel that apps are the next evolution of the web while still others feel that there are too many apps and it's difficult to stand out or get noticed in the app world much like a vast never ending desert as pictured above.  What these series of articles will bring to you is information from which you can make your own decision as to the importance of an app for your business.

Here at AppYourWay we feel that the way we accessed information in the past, via a desktop browser, is on the sharp decline especially by those who are under 40 years of age.   After surveying 1049 users of various ages and who use various devices, it was concluded that less than 8% will access your website using their mobile device and only 22% will do so on a desktop computer.

This leave a very serious question when it comes to spending your hard earned marketing budget - how do I get the attention of the other 92% and 78% of users?

Well to get that answer, you need to follow our series of articles, each one designed to give you more information and reveal more about the survey results.  It's powerful, it's insightful but most of all, it's information that in 2017 your business cannot ignore.

Important definitions:

  • Any reference to “mobile” means the combination of smartphone and tablet. When data is referring specifically smartphones or tablets, it will be labeled accordingly.
  • All mobile data is based on Age 18+ population.
  • A “unique visitor” is a person who visits an app or digital media property at least once over the course of a month. This metric, in app parlance, is equivalent to a “monthly active user/MAU”. A “daily visitor” is similar to a “daily active user/DAU.”

This table below will provide you with a quick link to articles that you find relevant.  If you wish to leave any comments or have questions, please feel free to contact me and I'll be sure to get back to you.


NumberRelease DateTitle
012017-02-04What happens to the other 92% ?
022017-02-06App Overview

App Overview

By Terry Billingsley posted February 6, 2017

To understand how our evolution is progressing, we take a look at users behaviour for phones, tablets and traditional web browsers using desktop computers.  Over the past three years, starting in 2013 to 2016, total digital media time spent has grown 53%, driven mostly by a 111% growth in mobile apps usage and, to a lesser extent, mobile web which saw a 62% growth.

The past year alone has seen healthy but weaker growth rates on mobile of 11%, while desktop usage has actually declined by 11%.

With desktop engagement finally in decline, it is now losing share to mobile at a rapid rate. The convenience of smartphones and tablet devices, and the innovation around mobile apps have completely shifted the digital media landscape in favor of mobile.  Mobile now represents almost 2 out of 3 digital media minutes, and mobile apps are approaching 60% of total digital time spent.

Decline of desktop usage by 11% from 2015 to 2016, the most in any one year

The desktop time spent using digital media, has decreased by 16% while apps have increased by 16% in three years.

Millennials spend an exorbitant amount of time on their smartphone apps, and usage declines with age. However, every segment of the population is using their smartphone apps more over time, with 55-64 year-olds seeing the greatest year-over-year increase with growth of 37%.

Tablet app usage was down across the board in the past year, but the biggest drop came among 35-44 year-olds. Interestingly, the most engaged tablet users are both the youngest and oldest segments of the population. 18-24 year-olds make use of tablet apps for games, entertainment and school activities, while older users rely on tablets for news and reading.

Younger consumers spend the largest share of their time on smartphone apps, but nearly every group outside of the oldest segment prefers this platform. Possibly due to familiarity and their larger screens, desktop and tablets have a higher share of engagement as users get older.  Notice in the slide 'Share of Platform Time Spent By Age' below, that of the age groups from 18-65 ,the average % of users who access the smartphone web, which is the browser on the smartphone or tablet, is just 6%.  So your business is not being found by using a mobile browser.

Smartphone app usage time is increasing among every age group in the past year and is highest among Millennials.

Smartphone apps already drive the majority of web usage for 18-44 year-olds and are nearing that level for all but the oldest web users.

Mobile app continues to outpace mobile web by a 7:1 margin in time spent, a ratio that has held constant for the past two years.

Mobile time spent continues to be dominated by apps, and has maintained the same ratio of app to mobile web time the past two years. Tablets have a higher percentage of activity happen on the browser, given its more comparable screen size to desktop and a lighter selection of tablet-optimized apps.

So consider that your customers will only spend 13% of their time visiting your website but will spend 87% of their time to visit your website if it were in an app.   It's convenient for them to do so and it's what they've come to expect in 2016.

In conclusion of this article, the smartphone app is increasing at every age group and time spent is growing leaps and bounds year over year.  The most astonishing stat here is the decline of the desktop usage by 11% in just one year.  

In my next article, I'll discuss mobile app versus mobile web audiences, is having a mobile website enough?