Report: Half of app users' peak use happens at the three-month mark

More than half of mobile apps peak out in terms of usage after three months, according to recent research from BI Intelligence. The firm's App Store Marketing report assesses  how consumers are using apps across a variety of platforms. 

  • The average user spent about 70 percent of app time in their three most frequently used apps. 
  • The cost-per-install on iOS soared 59 percent year over year in October, while the cost to retain a loyal user--defined as a user who opens the app at least three times in a two-week period--is even higher than acquiring a new one, and was up 33 percent year over year. 
  • Android and the Google Play store offer app marketers an attractive deal in terms of the cost of user acquisition. The cost is about 25 percent less than it is on iOS. 
  • Between 2012 and 2013, the number of apps used in a month rose by only 1 percent, a major slowdown compared to 2011 and 2012, when growth was 15 percent. 
Average number of apps and average time spent BI Intelligence

(Source: BI Intelligence App Store Marketing Report, Jan. 2015)

"One factor that can drive up app-marketing costs is the debut of a marquee phone like the iPhone. Downloads soar after the device launches, and developers must pay a premium to remain visible and make sure new smartphone buyers download apps on these new devices," the report says. "We expect download volumes and price to remain high over the next few months as more users upgrade to iOS 8 and more iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus devices are activated."

Although this report doesn't represent much in the way of original research--it brings together data from Flurry, Comscore and Fiksu, among others--it's a good aggregation of recent trends that show the challenges app developers face. Probably beyond the stats are a number of in-depth suggestions around app marketing strategies, including some free ideas. There are also several rich case study examples of developers who have tried different approaches to app marketing with measurable success. 

For more:
- get the full report here

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