Mobile apps

The mobile app landscape is highly competitive with hundreds of thousands of products available in dozens of different app stores.

In this crowded marketplace, what are the best strategies to help your mobile app stand out? Throughout all phases of the development lifecycle, startups should be aware of the ever-changing mobile app landscape and keep abreast of the latest trends. This will influence your design, programming, implementation and launch―all of which will help you stay competitive.

As in any business, a strategic marketing plan is required. Whether your mobile app is a niche product or service, or a game with mainstream appeal, a solid strategic marketing plan takes into account multiple factors such as OS platform, components and APIs, app stores, rankings, app metrics and more. The resources below will help mobile app developers and entrepreneurs find data, strategies and insights on these issues in the complex, competitive world of mobile apps.

This resource contains the following sections:

I. Mobile App Trends & Statistics

II. Mobile App Ecosystem

III. Tracking Latest Developments in Mobile Apps

I. Mobile App Trends & Statistics

Look to the following resources to find the latest industry trends and statistics.

General Mobile App Trends & Statistics

The following section spotlights where to find statistics and trends for mobile apps across multiple platforms―including metrics such as app download figures, app rankings, sales figures and consumer demographics. The resources listed here are free, although some do offer premium services at a cost.
App Annie: App Annie offers three main services, two of which are free:

  • App Annie Store Stats enables visitors to view app rankings and profiles, as well as related purchase data and geographical statistics.
  • App Annie Analytics makes it easy for app publishers to track their product’s downloads, revenues, rankings and reviews for iOS and Android.
  • App Annie Intelligence is a premium service that provides developers with in-depth market intelligence.

App Genome Report (Lookout): The App Genome Project is a security survey of mobile apps, which by the start of 2013 had scanned and mapped over 500,000 mobile apps from multiple mobile platforms and app markets. The App Genome Report offers information culled from the world’s largest application dataset, and provides figures on the market share of platforms, alternate app markets, what type of users data apps are accessing, and pricing.

Ten Enterprise Mobility Statistics That May Surprise You (infographic): An infographic illustrating the growth of mobility in enterprise.

12 Essential Enterprise Mobile Apps Statistics [infographic]: Important enterprise mobile apps statistics.

Localytics: Localytics builds analytic software for developers and marketers to monitor their app activity. It offers free resources in the form of case studies, insights from its blog, webinars on customer segmentation and interaction, and eBooks on building effective and engaging apps. Registration is required.

mobiForge: mobiForge provides insight and information for mobile marketers offering analysis and interviews with leading industry professionals. Its extensive compendium of mobile statistics offers a section on mobile apps, app stores, pricing and failure rates.

Mobile Commerce and Engagement Stats (Phunware Location Marketing): This resource is a listing of brief statistics on mobile engagement pulled from various data sources, including Forrester Research, comScore, JiWire and Experian. Phunware also provides other free resources in the form of blogs, white papers and e-books.

2016 State of Mobile App Developers (InMobi): This infographic is based on surveying over 1,000 app developers.

The 2016 U.S. Mobile App Report (comScore): comScore publishes this annual whitepaper published by comScore regarding the mobile app industry in the US.

What Defines Leaders in Mobile Apps? (MGI Research, 2014): MGI Research conducts an annual study of the mobile app industry, focusing on development, management and security.

Infographic: Mobile App Engagement 2016, by Vertical: This infographic by Apptentive provides benchmark metrics companies can use to measure the performance of mobile apps.

App Forecast: Over $100 Billion in Revenue by 2020 (App Annie, 2016): An outlook on the mobile app economy by App Annie, this report looks at the market revenues and projects, as well as categories to watch.

The State of Mobile Apps and Gaming in 2016 (Think with Google): Google published this research study e-book for its annual Mobile App Developers’ Advisory Board event.

Mobile App Industry Revenue Statistics: Where’s the Money Come From? (SurveyMonkey Intelligence, 2016): This article explores on revenues from mobile applications.

YUDU: YUDU provides publishing support services to publishers, brands, marketers and retailers to help them post interactive media content to the Web and mobile devices. The company’s white papers deliver insights into trends and statistics on app technology and mobile devices.

SimilarWeb allows you to get insights for websites and mobile apps.

iOS App Trends & Statistics

These resources focus on iOS app trends and statistics.
App Annie Top Apps (iOS): App Annie displays the top apps on iOS in terms of Free, Paid and Top Grossing. You can also filter by country, category and in-app purchases, as well as date. This website is an information exchange for mobile app and game developers to communicate about the business side of app development. Members can contribute and explore articles on topics such as marketing, releasing and financing their app. The App Store Metrics section offers a summary of statistics from the iTunes App Store.

iOSappStats: iOSappStatshouses relevant iOS app statistics, searchable by region, genre and paid versus free. This site also supplies news, reviews and a collection of infographics focused on mobile app trends.

Android App Trends & Statistics

The following resources zero in on trends and statistics of Android-based apps.
App Annie Top Apps (Google Play): App Annie displays Top App on Google Play by Free, Paid and Top Grossing. You can also filter by country, category, in-app purchases as well as dates.

AndroidTapp (Bluestacks): AndroidTapp (Bluestacks) is an app store that provides statistics, news and reviews on Android apps. A quick search returns a number of articles that contain Android statistics on topics such as downloads, sales and OS version.

AppBrain: Android Market Stats: This website offers stats on available Android apps as well as downloads, ratings, categories and more. Figures on Android phone use are also available.

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II. Mobile App Ecosystem

The following resources shed light on the mobile app development cycle, from initial inspiration to product launch.

How to Make a Successful App: 10 Fundamentals for Maximizing Your Investment: This article by Urban Airship touches on the importance of early planning and other aspects in app development.

How to Succeed With Your Mobile App (Smashing Magazine, 2012): This extensive article explains how to sell your app. The author, Jeremy Olson, writes that while the process starts with an idea, finding a niche and filling a vacuum, it does not end there. Designing, programming and marketing your app are all key ingredients to achieve success, and Olson addresses these in the article.

They Make Apps: Got an idea for an app? This networking site allows people with ideas for an app to find an app developer. Users can view a developer’s profile, which includes their portfolio, estimated pricing and platform expertise.

Wireless Industry Partnership (WIP): WIP works to connect stakeholders in the mobile ecosystem. Its aim is to support the overall community by encouraging discussion and joint creative efforts, and to streamline the mobile innovation process. This site includes a blog and event listings.

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III. Tracking Latest Developments in Mobile Apps

These blogs and news sources provide the latest on the fast-paced developments in the mobile apps industry.

Focused Apps: This blog is from app developer Mark Johnson, founder of Focused Apps LLC. He provides programming tips, case studies from his own company and business strategies for developing successful apps. The blog entries frequently cover app store and app sales statistics.

AppData gives a weekly ranking of the top downloaded apps for iOS, Android and Facebook.
Mobile Commerce Daily: This newsletter provides recent reports on mobile commerce topics. A simple search reveals mobile app and app store news.

Mobile Phone Development: Simon Judge, an Android developer, writes this blog. Simon discusses subjects that range from market research and programming to raising capital and the user experience. He frequently draws on market research from firms such as Gartner, Accenture and VisionMobile.

mobyaffiliates: mobyaffiliates spotlights mobile marketing, covering topics such as mobile ad networks and app news. The website offers mobile market and app development guides, and one noteworthy blog post includes a directory of app stores.

OS X Daily: OS X Daily focuses on developments for Apple OS and iOS products. It also publishes user guides related to modifying the Apple OS.

TechNewsWorld: TechNewsWorld publishes daily on major tech developments and news. It frequently posts articles on new app releases and developer profiles.

  • VisionMobile―blog: updated regularly and reviews important trends and statistics, summarizing key findings from the companies’ studies.

App Discovery Tools/Aggregators/Search Engines

Below is a list of popular mobile app discovery tools, aggregators and search engines:

  • Product Hunt: Users and enthusiasts of software can share and rate the latest mobile apps, websites, hardware projects and tech creations. The platform has both an iOS and Android sections, as well as other applications.
  • Homescreen.Me: This web app allows iOS users to share their devices’ homescreens with the online community.
  • Appolicious: This directory from Yahoo enables users not only to search and discover apps from multiple platforms, but also to browse categories and view app profiles and news.
  • AppShopper: Browse and shop for iOS apps using this directory.
  • AppTap: AppTap is a platform and advertising network centered on app recommendations.

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