Between 2014 and 2015, Asia experienced double digit growth within its mobile app economy with sessions growing 77 per cent, according to a report by Flurry Analytics, which describes the continent as “the lynchpin of the mobile revolution… designing and manufacturing devices and publishing some of the world’s most popular apps”.
The growth is being driven by consumer categories, particularly shopping & lifestyle, which saw 278 per cent year-over-year growth in sessions in Asia, news & reading (134 per cent) and utilities and productivity (89 per cent), reflective of the region’s “growing purchasing power and sophistication” (click image below to enlarge).
This, coupled with the fact that messaging & social and games categories are growing at a “decelerated rate in comparison to their historic trends… indicates that users in Asia have started to adapt their app usage for purposes beyond the traditional gaming and entertainment functions.”
However, games are still at the top when it comes to time spent in apps. Twenty five per cent of mobile app time spent is in games, followed by lifestyle and shopping (19 percent) and utilities and productivity (17 per cent).
Although messaging is a large driver of sessions in Asia and around the world, it only represents 13 percent of time spent in apps.
Shopping trends in Asia differ by country: shoppers in Singapore prefer traditional e-commerce and brick and mortar locations, while in India, online shopping destinations, such as Myntra, are shutting down their websites in favour of an app-only strategy.
“Although the shift from e-commerce to m-commerce has not occurred everywhere in Asia, we are still seeing staggering growth across the region in terms of engagement,” the report noted.
Phablet users in Asia conduct 78 per cent more sessions than the average smartphone user. As more users in the region adopt phablets, the report predicts that app growth will continue and perhaps accelerate.
Although 81 per cent of Asia’s photography app users are female, men in Asia are 1.9 times more likely to use photography apps than men in the rest of the world.
Globally, 81 per cent of personalisation app users are men, but in Asia usage is split equally between men and women. This makes women in Asia 2.7 times more likely than the global female population to use such apps, “likely due to prevalence of Android devices in the region”.
Flurry Analytics tracks 610 million monthly active devices. For this study it examined app usage behaviour in 30 Asian countries.