Consumers spent a record $23.4 billion on mobile apps in Q1 2020, largely due to being stuck indoors over the last month.
To put this in context, the first quarter of 2020 has been the biggest ever in terms of consumer spend on apps. That’s a whopping 31 billion new apps installed on devices worldwide since the beginning of the year. Plus, the average weekly time spent in apps and games worldwide was up 20% year-over-year.
Maintaining normality at home: health & fitness app boom
The market for Health & Fitness apps, in particular, is booming right now, as users look to their mobile screens to find new ways to stay fit and maintain their mental health during the lockdown period.
Health & Fitness was up 40% on Google Play and 30% on iOS, quarter-over-quarter. Education was up 35% on Google Play and 40% on iOS. And Business was up was up 30% on Google Play and 35% on iOS.
“As the scale of the Coronavirus outbreak becomes clear, governments and businesses have stepped up their responses, which include more stringent social distancing protocols,” reports app market analysts, App Annie.
“Meanwhile, consumers on lockdown at home continue to explore new ways to leverage mobile to do their shopping, manage their finances, stay fit, be productive and stay entertained during this trying time.”
Non-gaming apps accounted for 35% of consumer spend on iOS and 15% on Google Play, with a large percentage of these being health & fitness apps or mobile working and productivity apps such as Zoom or new gamified social interaction apps such as Houseparty.
“As working from home becomes the norm, and more schools and gyms begin to close, we’ve seen an increase in downloads of apps that allow consumers to maintain normality while staying at home,” adds App Annie.
Future Fitness: Health, Wellness and Fitness App Trends
Downloads of health and fitness apps rocketed 65% in the UK during the week of 22nd March with consumer spend topping $2.9 million, according to App Annie. With time spent by Brits in health and fitness apps up 10% over the first week of the coronavirus lockdown.
Health, fitness and wellness start-ups are closely analysing the trends in this booming market, as technology continues to disrupt traditional public and private health sectors and fitness industries such as bricks-n-mortar gyms.
Health and fitness apps are now leading the way more generally in app development when it comes to tech innovation in artificial intelligence (AI), data security, user experience (UX) design, virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR), wearable tech and biometric monitoring, thanks to smart watches enabling tracking information like weight, activity, sleep, heart rate and more.
Garmin, Fitbit, Nike, Apple, Strava and newer entrants to the market such as Headspace and Peleton have all benefited hugely from the boom in health and fitness apps over the last five years.
Right now, in the midst of this global health and healthcare crisis, the time is ripe for innovation and disruption in the market. And one quick glimpse at App Annie’s top health & fitness apps for April 2020 for iOS on the App Store and for Android on Google Play only serves to show that competition in the market is both healthy (sic) and fierce.