Half of digital time is spent in smartphone apps

Smartphone apps account for half (50%) of the digital media time that US adults spend online, followed by desktop (34%), with tablet and mobile web rounding out the remaining 16%, a new study has found.

But in a sign of just how much younger consumers have embraced mobile, the latest US Mobile App Report from measurement firm comScore, found two-thirds (66%) of those aged 18 to 24 now spend their digital time in smartphone apps compared with just 23% who spend their time on desktop.

Meanwhile, just 27% of Americans aged 65+ spend their digital time in smartphone apps, with more than half (53%) preferring desktop. Even among millennials aged 25 to 34, smartphone apps account for little over half (54%) of their share of platform time.

According to analysis of the findings by Marketing Land, this data contains “clear audience targeting implications” along with comScore’s finding that the “duopoly” of Facebook and Google own as many as eight of the top ten apps in the US.

Facebook’s main app is the most popular, reaching 81% of all app users – although YouTube is the top app among 18-to-24-year-olds – while Facebook Messenger and Instagram come in at third and sixth respectively.

Google-owned apps account for five of the top ten apps, including YouTube (#2), Google Search (#3), Google Maps (#4), Google Play (#8) and Gmail (#9).

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