Report: Greystripe Says iPhone Apps Have An Average Shelf-Life Of 20 Sessions


imageGreystripe has dissected the usage patterns of 600 free, ad-supported iPhone applications in its ad network to come to a number of conclusions about consumers habits on the iPhone. Generally, it found that while usage may be intense, applications have a limited lifespan.

Here are the findings:


Download Demographer

The low shelf life of iPhone downloads is offset by the propagation speed across the iPhone user base. The propagation or multiplier effect of the iPhone App Store will not easily be repeated in the history of technological ingestion. The iPhone app propagation is the unique coincidence of having the same device, highly mobile, technologically savvy, and Apple loyalists by way of iPods or Macs. Improved 4G networks of speed and coverage have potential for even faster propagation. But as the Greystripe shows, the problem is shelf life.
Short shelf life plus fast propagation are the equation for low monetization. And saturation could be an additional discount factor from Apple's "media pads" and "lite-iPhones" combined with competing operators like AT&T vs. Verizon. The downloaders of longer shelf-life apps tend to be like traditional Mac loyalists. These higher value downloaders are selective adopters that will not take to redundancy if the iPhone becomes ubiquitous.

Mikko G.

I wonder if all instances of the word 'application' should be changed to 'game app' since, from reading the report, the usage data seems to be based entirely on their game apps.

This doesn't take away from the novelty of the data though. Thanks for covering this.

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