Emoji apps the big winner as mobile use continues to grow

The mobile industry continues to mature, according to the latest report by Flurry, with overall app usage growing by 58 per cent year-on-year.

Throughout 2015 every app category, with the exception of Games, posted growth, with Personalization, News & Magazines and Productivity experiencing the biggest gains.

Personalisation apps saw their usage grow by 332 per cent last year, with this category encompassing a wide range of software. The majority of growth came from Emoji apps, such as keyboards, which enable users to customise their messaging software. The News & Magazine category was the second fastest grower, increasing by 135 per cent. The uplift provides further evidence that content is shifting to mobile apps away from traditional media such as TV.

Further analysis found that the type of mobile device being used had a major impact on application usage. Apps that fall into the News & Magazine, Sports, and Music, Media, & Entertainment categories over-indexed across phablets, for example, when compared to growth rates across all mobile devices. Similarly, the time spent on phablets grew by 334 per cent year-on-year, representing 2.9 times the mobile average.

The findings ae particularly interesting when you consider that phablets were once derided as little more than a fad by many industry experts. However, it seems that the launch of the iPhone 6 Plus has firmly cemented the larger-screened devices within the mobile landscape. In fact, 27 per cent of all new devices activated during the Christmas period were phablets.

Although the growth rate of mobile use is slowing, to still achieve figures of 58 per cent is impressive for an industry of such relative maturity. The success of phablets also demonstrates that the mobile market continues to deliver surprises, meaning that it is anyone’s guess as to what 2016 will bring to the table.

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