With one of four phones being a smartphone, US mobile App economy is on a fast forward march according to Nielsenwire. 59% of smartphone owners and nearly 9% of feature phone owners report having downloaded a mobile app in the last 30 days as of June 2010.
According to the report, "The State Of Mobile Apps" based on the Mobile Apps Playbook survey of 4,000 people, app download and usage vary with the phone!
iPhone users showed Facebook, Blackberry users The Weather Channel, Android people Google Maps and WinMo users the music service Pandora as their number one application.
Most users discover their apps on the phone itself (40%) and the next group (36%) by word of mouth, must be in the new form or word of mouth, I guess, in tweets and such.
Apps users who go to the Apple App Store tend to download nearly twice as many apps as those who go to the Android Market or the BlackBerry App World Store. They also seem more willing to pay for their apps: Apple App Store customers report that for every two free apps they download, they typically pay for one. In contrast, apps users who frequent the Android Market and Blackberry App World stores report downloading more than 3.5 free apps for every one they buy. Meanwhile, BlackBerry owners are the least likely to convert from a “lite,” free trial version of an app to a full, paid version.
The other surprise was in the Mobile Advertising. Android and iPhone users treated advertisements on their phones differently, teenagers were “much more receptive than their elders” in looking at advertisments inside an app. 58 percent of teenagers told the Nielsen researchers that they watch mobile ads.
In conclusion, Nielson states that
A is for Android and Ads: • Android owners show a clear preference for free apps. This may be due in part to the browsing interface on the Android Market, which makes it easy to browse free titles exclusively. However, we also know that Android owners tend to be younger and less affluent than iPhone users. Either way, they are more likely to click on an ad within an app, and that spells a clear monetization strategy for anyone targeting the fast growing Android user base.Nielsen Blog
B is for BlackBerry: • Despite a huge installed base, Blackberry app usage lags the iPhone. It remains to be seen whether RIM’s new devices and revamped store will persuade BlackBerry owners to embrace mobile apps.
C is for Consumer Convenience, Carriers and Credit Cards: • Consumers crave convenience, security, and consolidated bills when it comes to paying for their mobile apps. Carriers and credit card companies should already have consumers’ trust and are eager to carve out a central role in a world often eager to pass them by.
T is for Teens: • The young continue to be more receptive to mobile advertising than their elders. Will they continue to be more receptive as they age due to their comfort with technology, or will time temper their openness to mobile ads? Alternatively, will older generations become more receptive as they gain more experience with mobile? Future research should shed light on this issue.
T is also for Third Parties: • Apps users value the recommendations of third parties, whether it is a family member, a friend, or a site or service offering ratings and reviews. Those seeking to market mobile apps would be well advised to emphasize two tactics: Word-of-mouth marketing (including social media) and securing favorable ratings