Here's a chance to get some info off the big dogs when it comes to apps. MTV Networks hooked up with consultant group Latitude to uncover the underlying psychology and current behaviors surrounding app adoption, use and abandonment for heavy app users. The two camps say the study ultimately uncovered top characteristics and features of a successful app.
Here are the highlights:
1. Apps Create “Me” Moments: Apps allow intense personalization and hyper-focus, filling our idle moments with on-demand “me time.” This growing expectation for offerings with a powerful, instantaneous “me focus” is making its way into desired in-app entertainment and ad experiences. 87% of participants said: “Apps let me have fun no matter where I am or what I’m doing.”
2. Apps Make Everyday Life Better: Apps are enhancing our day-to-day experiences directly by enabling productivity and achievement of our personal goals – and, indirectly, through the resulting creation of free time, improved mental well-being, opportunities for positive discovery, and more. 77% of participants said: “Apps are my personal assistant.”
“Apps don’t have to relieve stress because it’s not even there to begin with; the problem is already solved,” explained Joe, a 23 year-old study participant.
3. Apps Open Us to New Worlds: Whether it’s learning new languages or overlaying a map of the sky onto some old-fashioned star-gazing, the possibilities seem endless as apps open people’s imaginations to the new and “magical.” 91% of participants said: “Apps expose me to new things.”
As one young participant put it, “I probably wouldn’t be able to function if I didn’t have the apps that are available to me now.”
The study also uncovered the life-cycle that app adoption tends to progress through, helping to offer direction to mobile developers, content creators, and advertisers depending on their various goals:
1. Discovery: Word-of-mouth rules when it comes to the discovery and adoption of mobile apps; 53% of participants said that personal recommendations are most important in deciding which apps to download.
2. Adoption: For paid apps, price is the top factor. However, offering a free or lite version of the app for previewing can go a long way, with 49% of participants saying this was the most important thing to them.
3. Trial: While 38% of TV and movie apps are deleted within the first three weeks after download, 44% of participants said they check them several times a day.
4. Abandonment or Long-Term Usage: For TV and movie apps, users will hang onto apps that are easy to use (79%) and have frequently updated content (55%). The presence of better alternatives (55%) and lack of new content (42%) will drive a consumer to delete an app.
The study included a round of initial qualitative interviews, a deprivation phase (normal app users were asked to go app-free for three days), and a quantitative survey of more than 1300 app-engaged smartphone owners between the ages of 13 and 64.