Is there such a thing as too many apps?
How many is too many? When will it all end? Is app-mageddon on the way? And in the meantime is your sanity being fragmented by too much choice?!
These are all important questions.
According to TechCrunch “Apps have become the new crack” and they’re not exaggerating. Consumers reach for their mobile phones more than one hundred times each day, based on data from Forrester Research.
There’s apps for everything… from fitness to therapy and everything in-between. It’s now literally impossible to get through a whole day without needing to use an app or ten (there will be exceptions of course… when you’re under general anesthetic for example).
Technology forces change. Sometimes that’s a great thing – for efficiency, productivity, improved customer service… just as long as it doesn’t feel more like Big Brother bullying than progress, “Order with your app or NO SOUP FOR YOU!” (Seinfeld)
Apps create an internal love-hate relationship for some of us. Who hasn’t been drawn to the ‘dark side’ and found hours have slipped away while scrolling, updating, reading or just ‘being in’ your collection of apps? There’s no doubt it can erode your experience of real life if you let it get out of hand… (and there’s no doubt your husband can tell you off for not paying him enough attention and looking at cute dog pics on Instagram instead… just a hypothetical example).
But what’s considered ‘out of hand’? And what if this IS now ‘real life’? Argh!
According to research by Nielsen, the average smartphone user accesses 26.7 apps per month. And that’s only on their phones… that doesn’t include tablets, web apps, smart watches and the ‘internet of things’! I always knew I was above average!
They also spend 37 hours and 28 minutes using these apps. That’s more than the official working week in France! And that number is growing – in 2012 it was ‘only’ 23 hours and 2 minutes.
But, it’s a fine line between pleasure and pain (Divinyls) . Having welcomed app technology with open arms, users are now beginning opt out.
“In some product categories, over 60% of their users turn off push notifications.” (Andrew Chen)
Too many notifications, too many interruptions, too many updates required, using too much battery… literally turning a phone into anything but a phone – more like an app monster, chomping away on what’s left of your ‘real life’.
Apparently, it’s bad news for app developers too … (should I re-think App Academy then?)
A survey of 10,000 app developers reveals a grim reality: based on the stats, your app will almost certainly not succeed. Standing out in such a crowded market was always going to be a challenge, but really… just 2 percent of all app developers pull in over 50 percent of all app revenue – 2%!!
“The revenue distribution is so heavily skewed towards the top that just 1.6% of developers make multiples of the other 98.4% combined. A staggering 47% of app developers either make literally no money, or less than $100 per month, per app.” (Valleywag)
As with everything in life, change really is the only constant and we must ‘adapt or die’! So at least we know that whatever tech headaches we have now, in two years time they will be gone… or at least, replaced with something else 😉
“The idea of having a screen full of icons, representing independent apps, that need to be opened to experience them, is making less and less sense. The idea that these apps sit in the background, pushing content into a central experience, is making more and more sense.” (Intercom)