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September 17, 2014

App Usage on the Rise, Music Apps Most Popular

Image courtesy of (KROMKRATHOG)/

App usage is on the rise.

In fact, so many people are using mobile so often that the time spent using apps now exceeds time spent on the Web via desktop, according to new data from Localytics.

Overall time spent in-app has risen 21 percent with users opening an app 11.5 times a month on average – that’s risen from 9.4 a year ago (a 22 percent increase), while app session length has remained constant at 5.7 minutes.

Music apps have grown the most in popularity.

“Music apps were the big winner with a 79 percent increase in time spent with these apps, resulting in an increase of 64 minutes per month compared to last year,” said Localytics analyst Dave Hoch.

“As more people shift from iTunes to music apps such as SoundCloud and iHeartRadio, the time spent in music apps has drastically increased.”


Usage of health and fitness apps is No. 2 on the list with time in app rising 51 percent — that’s an average of 22 more minutes per month compared to usage last year.

“As the hardware specs for Smartphones increase, so too does their potential to act as a health device. The recently announced iPhone 6 and iPhone 6+ comes with a new Health app that continuously measures motion data,” Hoch said. “Similar features came with the Samsung Galaxy S5 released in May, including an integrated heart rate monitor and a fitness tracker. Increasingly, health features are coming standard with Smartphones, as hardware becomes more advanced and consumers demonstrate an interest in fitness tracking.”

Social Networking apps enjoy the highest number of app launches but the lowest session length, indicating that people prefer to quickly check-in often rather than have one lengthy session of scrolling through feeds.

Sports, music, and news apps also have a high number of app launches, “likely due to the timeliness aspect of such apps.”


Session length is highest in the music category because such apps are traditionally used during commutes and downtime, the report indicated, adding that while app downloads are not as high as they used to be, app usage will continue to grow.

“Despite reports that fewer apps are being downloaded each month, people are spending more time than ever in apps,” Hoch said. “Session length and app launches are important metrics to gauge app engagement, and together are an accurate representation of the amount of time users spend in apps. Time in apps have already surpassed desktop Web, and as mobile apps incorporate even greater personalization features, this number is only expected to increase.”


Jennifer Cowan is the Managing Editor for SiteProNews.