Mobile Monday is the weekly roundup of the latest news, trends, and developments in mobile apps, tech, and advertising. Digital Turbine, AdColony, and Fyber have partnered up to cover news and insights in apps and games. This week we touch on the future of mobile discovery, consumer spending and engagement in apps during H2 2021, and the major milestone Candy Crush Jelly Saga recently crushed.
If Your Phone Was Netflix
Netflix has long been the king of discovery. From way back to their days of long queue lists of DVDs mailed to you, they understood that there was great power in making it easy for consumers to discover their next watching experience. Moving to today, their interface speaks to that. As soon as you log in, Netflix could very easily just let you continue what you were watching last. But instead, you’ll see an ad for a hot new show, promoted shows in different categories, top 10 lists of what’s trending. Sure, you can scroll down to your watch list and continue watching what you were last – but the interface serves as a subtle reminder of the possibilities of what’s next.
And, not coincidentally, “See What’s Next” is a Netflix tagline.
Now compare this with the smartphone. When you first open your phone, you’ll either see a sea of icons or the last app you were in. Which leaves you to swipe, tap, scroll around to find what you want to do next. What if the phone worked more like the Netflix interface? Consumers would instead see hot new apps, trending apps, and what they might have missed. Sure, somewhere on the page it would contain a list of frequently used apps – but it would also serve to help us discover what’s new. Wouldn’t that be awesome?
Well, maybe that future is coming sooner than we think. This byline in the Business of Apps takes a look at some advances in mobile discovery and re-imagines the smartphone as if it were, well… Netflix.
Consumer Spending and Engagement in Apps Keep Growing
When app activity reached extreme heights in 2020, many weren’t sure if this would last after lockdowns were eventually lifted. First-app install rates have normalized and have grown less than 2% year-over-year in H1 2021, much lower than the previous 26% growth seen in H1 2020. Despite this slowdown, both consumer engagement and spending have remained elevated. Sensor Tower’s latest report, State of App Engagement revealed that the top 500 apps averaged a record 92 million monthly active users in Q2 2021, an 8.4% jump year-on-year. In the same quarter last year, average MAUs stood at 85 million, up 18%.
Sensor Tower’s data also showed that worldwide consumer spending climbed to $33.6 billion across Apple’s App Store and Google Play in the third quarter of 2021. This figure represents a 15% Y/Y increase from $29.2 billion in Q3 2020, about half of the 32% Y/Y increase seen last year. While growth has slowed down, these results should still not be discounted. The boom of early COVID-19 times has come to an end but consumers’ habits have already formed. Spending and engaging with apps was not a temporary behavior and instead has become an essential part of daily life.
500 million reasons why Candy Crush Jelly Saga is crushing it!
We all know it, and we all most likely played it. The legendary mobile puzzle game Candy Crush, brought to us by King, first hit the App Stores in 2012 and swept across the world with a hungry appetite for more. With three tasty sequels: Candy Crush Soda Saga, Candy Crush Jelly Saga, and Candy Crush Friends Saga, the free-to-play titles still sit at the top of download charts. However, most noteworthy – the Match-3 Saga game, Candy Crush Jelly Saga, has surpassed a major milestone of $500 million in consumer spend since its launch back in 2015.
What makes Candy Crush Jelly Saga different from its predecessor, Candy Crush Saga, is its head-to-head Real Time vs mode feature which makes it fun, yet challenging to fully master. In fact, Jelly Saga is the only game in the franchise to offer Synchronous PVP – whereby players are matched in real-time against other players, and both play the game at the same time. This added feature has helped boost engagement and made winning that more satisfying.
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Mobile Monday examines the latest news, trends, and developments in mobile apps, tech, and advertising. Do you have a story to share for the next Mobile Monday?
About Digital Turbine
Digital Turbine is the leading independent mobile growth platform and levels up the landscape for advertisers, publishers, carriers, and OEMs. By integrating a full ad stack with proprietary technology built into devices by wireless operators and OEMs, Digital Turbine supercharges advertising and monetization. Looking to supercharge your mobile advertising? Check out their blog to start!
AdColony, part of Digital Turbine’s leading independent mobile growth and monetization platform, helps brands, agencies, and apps expand their reach and results with the power of mobile. AdColony is known globally for its award-winning video advertising marketplace, with ad engagement innovations like Instant-Play™, Aurora™ HD Video, Playables, and more. Looking for more insights on apps and mobile games? Find out more on their blog!