Most Americans can’t imagine leaving home without their mobile phones. Nearly all adults in the U.S. now have cellphones, with one in four having smartphones, pocket-sized devices more powerful than the computers initially used to send men to the moon. By the end of 2011, Nielsen predicts that the majority of mobile subscribers in the U.S. will have smartphones. With their rich features and capabilities, these devices have been fertile ground for the growth of mobile apps. As of June 2010, 59% of smartphone owners and nearly 9% of feature phone owners report having downloaded a mobile app in the last 30 days.
To better understand the growing popularity of mobile apps—and help all players in the mobile ecosystem figure out how to profit from their growth—The Nielsen Company launched the Mobile Apps Playbook in December 2009. The most recent version of the study was released in September 2010 and was based on an August 2010 survey of more than 4,000 mobile subscribers who had reported downloading a mobile app in the previous 30 days.
This white paper summarizes some of the findings of the Nielsen App Playbook study and was created for the first-ever AppNation Conference, held in San Francisco in September 2010.