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New study reconfirms that most apps are downloaded, then abandoned

How many apps do you have on your phone right now that you’ve downloaded and forgotten about? Us too. A new study reconfirms this growing trend.

digital trends

digital trends

No one uses every app they download. No one.

Have you have ever downloaded an app, enjoyed it for a few days, and then decided to part ways? Well, you are not alone.

According to a study done by Localytics, which is an analysis and marketing platform dedicated to applications for websites and mobile devices, 58 percent of app users become inactive within the first 30 days of downloading and app. After two months, these numbers go up to 71 percent and then increase again to 75 percent in the third month.

Being that it is common to download and flee, app developers are having difficulty figuring out a way to keep users coming back. Localytics found a correlation between the number of app sessions a user utilizes and abandonment. Seventy-five percent of users who only use an app once within 30 will churn, or become inactive. And, with that, only 14 percent of users who utilize 11 or more app sessions will churn within the premiere month.

What is the biggest hurdle?

The study also found what they deem a “critical hurdle” which is what app users reach when they have seen the value in an app and use it at least three times per month. Even with this, users are still found to churn. However, the churn is said to decrease 29 percent if users can use the app three times within the first three days (which Localytics describes at their “3×3 rule”).

Having been a person who has churned their back on apps within the first month of downloading, I reflected on my reasoning for abandonment. It turns out that there was more to the equation than I initially thought.

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The main reason I abandon apps is a lack of interest. Something that may have pulled my attention one day may not keep me coming back if the app is stagnant (i.e. a game that is repetitive or an informational app/tool that does not get updated). Because of this, I have been found to delete apps that I get bored of and replace them with other apps that I come upon in the “store”.

However, a major reason that I delete apps is because they take up too much space. I will often delete an app, re-download it if I need it for a specific instance, and then delete it again to free up space.

At the end of the day, there are only a few apps that are needed as constants on a mobile device (email, Facebook, Twitter, etc.) Developers are left with the difficult tasks of making their apps to be always appealing in order to be continuously utilized.


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Staff Writer, Taylor Leddin is a publicist and freelance writer for a number of national outlets. She was featured on Thrive Global as a successful woman in journalism, and is the editor-in-chief of The Tidbit. Taylor resides in Chicago and has a Bachelor in Communication Studies from Illinois State University.



  1. Pingback: Apps are dead, so how are w supposed to appeal to mobile users? - The Real Daily

  2. Pingback: Apps are dead, so how are do we appeal to mobile users now!? - The American Genius

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