If you pick up a mobile phone in the USA, there’s a 50% chance you’ll find an application on it. That’s the finding of the latest survey from the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project.
In August this year, it found that 38% of US-based adult mobile phone users had downloaded an app - and, when you include people who’d bought phones with pre-loaded apps, that figure rises to 50%. In May 2010, the total figure was 43%.
Figures for tablet computer owners are much higher; of the 10% of US adults who currently own a tablet, 75% say they’ve downloaded apps to their tablet.
Kristen Purcell, author of the report and Associate Director for Research at Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, said “While mobile apps are a fairly new approach to accessing online content, the main functions they fill for users are the same we’ve seen with previous technologies - namely information gathering and communication. It’s too early to know if, by providing instant, direct connections to information, apps are a game changer. While they are a significant change from using search engines and web browsers, the basic functions apps fill are not revolutionary.”
[Pew Internet report]