In the early 2000s, Apple coined the term “There is an app for this” to showcase its latest line of third-party apps. The movement has proven to be huge for the mobile phone industry. Instead of a suite of apps, from games to weather reports, users could finally download apps from other developers.
Since then, there has been a boom in mobile apps, many of which follow contemporary fads. For example, Fitbit ushered in the modern era of fitness and health apps that work with a remote sensor to deliver data to the body. Currently, there is a huge boom in games for mobile applications that coincides with the rise of eSports.
Today, there are nearly nine million apps in circulation, according to RiskIQ, with Americans using up to 46 apps per month. But not all of them are useful, and there is no reliable data that indicates what types of apps are used on a daily basis. Statistics tend to focus on the type of app downloaded and the number of downloads.
Obviously, there is oversaturation in the market. This can have tangible effects for mobile users, as some apps will charge a subscription fee after luring users with a big deal, while others can collect data even when not in use. Even more will simply take up space and be forgotten.
So how can users be more attentive to the apps they download in order to get the most out of each product? Here are four simple steps that can be used to assess (or re-evaluate) mobile app usage.
Have a (specific) goal
An application must serve a specific purpose. In fact, the variation available in the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store allows users to find a very specialized app that meets their needs. Selecting the first app listed in a store is settling for less.
For example, a poker enthusiast might be looking for a training app that would help them learn the ropes. However, there will be a variety of options related to learning poker, which could focus on old school strategy or how to get the most out of online gambling. Before looking for an application, understand what the concrete purpose of the application will be.
Similar to the variety of choices pictured above, users will also find a handful of options that fulfill the same mission. In the case of social media, that’s okay, but it’s in other areas.
For example, more than 8,000 apps use the word “weather,” according to The Guardian, for Android users alone. Of these options, most will cover daily weather reports specific to a certain area. Whatever the purpose of downloading a weather app, be sure to compare the best options. Read user reviews and reviews, and be sure to determine if an app is optimized for Android or iPhone products.
With so much variation in the app market, most developers will be looking to create unique features specific to a certain demographic they are targeting. For example, budgeting apps are one of the most popular emerging areas of the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store.
Each budget app has a suite of features that make it easy to track finances against a specific topic. Some apps make it easier to keep track of business expenses and income, while others will seek to make budgeting a household easier.
To fully utilize an application, a user must be prepared to delve into its special features. Often, these are listed directly below the app in its description, which makes shopping easier.
Keep your finger on the pulse
As mentioned in the first section, finding the perfect app is easier with a clear goal in mind. However, with new apps released every month and new startups tackling issues every year, there are some amazing new releases around the corner all the time.
Those looking to make their lives easier using apps may consider signing up for technology-related newsletters that cover apps and new technologies related to their specific interests. And, of course, make sure to always update existing apps for optimal performance.