The ‘old’ saying “There is an app for that” has never been more relevant with continued app disruption in all consumer businesses. Industries such as finance, travel, retail, banking and video streaming going through major restructuring as apps come to the fore of their services and operations.

Case in point: many businesses receive more than half of their sales via mobile channels, within which app users are 3x more likely to spend than mobile web users. In industries such as finance and retail, for instance, the convenience and immediacy of apps have made traditional person-to-person services less relevant for consumers. Irrevocably, apps are taking on a bigger role in many industries.

“A decade after Apple’s launch of its app store heralded the smartphone app revolution, apps continue to reshape entire industries on an unprecedented level in 2017. Apps no longer play a mere supplementary role in these sectors, and have grown to become an integral part of their services and sales,” said Jaede Tan, Regional Director, App Annie. “Against this changing backdrop, sound app analytics and insights have become imperative for businesses looking to make the most out of the app economy.”

A new report from App Annie a leading global mobile app market data and insights company shows:

App markets continue to mature, bringing increased monetisation opportunities

  • Global app downloads surpassed 175 billion, with users downloading 60% more apps in 2017 than in 2015
  • In the same period, daily time spent on apps rose by 30%, to hit 3 hours in 2017
  • Consumer spend in app stores more than doubled over past two years, to exceed $86 Billion in 2017
  • Growth in spending is driven by strong smartphone and app adoption in developing economies and apps ability to capture greater share of wallet in mature economies

 Australia-specific trends and statistics include:

  • A rise in the use of Fintech apps, up 25% in the past year
  • Sessions in retail apps have increased by 80% over the past two years
  • In the media and entertainment industries, consumer app spend has risen 292 % when comparing 2017 with 2015
  • Top five video streaming apps in Australia rank; Youtube, Netflix, AFL Live, ABC iView and Foxtel Go.
  • Total spend on gaming apps has climbed 50% over the past three years

Top apps by total monthly users in Australia include:

  • Facebook Messenger is the number one most downloaded app, followed by Facebook itself, followed by Instagram, WhatsApp Messenger and Snapchat
  • The most-downloaded games were Pokemon Go, Candy Crush Saga, Clash of Clans, Words With Friends, and then Monopoly at Maccas.

Apps making the most money in Australia include:

  • Tinder comes in at number one, followed by Netflix, Spotify Zoosk and Youtube.
  • In mobile gaming, Heart of Vegas leads the way, followed by Slotomania, Cashman Casino, Clash of Clans and Candy Crush Saga.

 Four of the top five countries by downloads and consumer spend are emerging markets – China, India, Brazil and Russia

  • Total consumer app spend in Australia reached US$1.08 billion – the 8th highest globally
  • India overtook the United States to become the number 2 country by downloads in 2017, with app usage driven by the introduction of subsidised, unlimited 4G access in September 2016
  • Top markets have seen double-digit percentage growth in consumer spend over the last two years, with China significantly the largest market by consumer spend

User engagement hit new heights with average smartphone user accessing close to 40 apps per month

  • Australians spent an average of 140 mins per day on their phones in 2017
  • In most markets, the average user has more than 80 apps on their phone
  • High level of engagement will result in more direct with customers, higher lifetime value

 Worldwide app engagement is well above mobile web

  •  In major markets, smartphone users spend 7x more time in native apps than mobile browsers, and access them 13x more often

 App disruptions across verticals continue to redefine our daily lives

  • Fintech: Booming interest in cryptocurrency has led to a rise in cryptocurrency apps, while increasingly pervasive payment apps in APAC are creating cashless societies in emerging markets
  • Retail: 70% to 210% increase in total time spent in retail apps, massive funding rounds for retailers focused in Southeast Asia
  • Social: Facebook’s apps continue to dominate leaderboards for most markets, Instagram sees 70% growth in time spent over past two years owing to new features, Telegram sees 75% increase in monthly active users (MAU) in same period
  • Video Streaming: Online-first broadcasters, e.g. Netflix is forcing traditional TV providers to compete with online services, with BBC launching their iPlayer to remain competitive, for instance