It is hard to believe that “apps” - software applications for mobile devices - were non-existent before 2007. Fewer than five years later, about half the mobile phone users in the United States have apps on their phones, according to a Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project report released November 2, 2011.
The Pew number includes users who bought phones with preloaded apps and those that have downloaded them. U.S. adults who’ve downloaded apps doubled from 2009 to 2011, according to the report. Pew’s figures put the percentage of adults with mobile phone apps at 42.
Pew's survey shows that app downloaders skew younger and male, but that the gap is narrowing. Tablet owners who download apps tend to be female.
Handshake Media asked Piedmont Research Associates to help answer the question of what women want in mobile apps. It follows the survey and report we did in the fall of 2010 on how women use their mobile devices, The Apps That Connect Us - A Report on Women, Smart Phones and Mobile Apps.
The 13-question The Apps Women Want Survey ran from October 4 through November 8, 2011. It was distributed virally through social media platforms and emails to members of various networks. Tracking data from the bit.ly link used showed 170 clicks. Seventy-three women actually took the survey, a higher percentage – 42.9 – than the 36 percent of female mobile phone owners who’ve downloaded apps (according to Pew).
The Apps Women Want Report - Conclusions
After we asked women what apps they liked and used, and how – or whether – they spent money on apps, we asked them what apps they wanted.
Some of the mobile apps they described are incredibly well thought-out. Some are pie-in-the-sky dreams. Many speak to women juggling busy lives, wanting easier ways to do the things they do. None listed games or entertainment.
More specifically, they asked for
- better ways to coordinate recipes, ingredients and shopping
- the ability to comparison shop throughout their local areas for gas and products
- ways to bring together the various parts of their lives
- better ways to work.
For the most part, these women wanted to bring clarity and simplicity to the palms of their hands.
Download the full The Apps Women Want Report (9-page .pdf)
Reports by Piedmont Research Associates for Handshake Media:
The Apps That Connect Us - A Report on Women, Smart Phones and Mobile Apps, December 2010
The Apps That Connect Us - A Report on Women, Smart Phones and Mobile Apps - Survey Results, January 2011
The Apps Women Want - Survey, October 2011
The Apps Women Want Report, November 2011 (this post)
Anne Piedmont is the founder of Piedmont Research Associates, an organization specializing in community research and statistics, competitive business intelligence, corporate writing services, and public relations.
For further reading: