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Apps

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Smartphone owners need daily app fix
AFP
February 28, 2013
First Published: 13:01 IST(28/2/2013)
Last Updated: 13:04 IST(28/2/2013)

Over 80 percent of smartphone owners can't go 24 hours without using an app and most would rather give up drinking coffee than delete their apps forever.


The Apigee survey of the UK, France, Germany, Spain and the US, highlights just how ingrained in modern life smartphones and app use have become. It finds that 82 percent of all 764 smartphone-owning respondents can't go for a whole day without their favorite apps. This dependence was most pronounced in Spain where 93 percent said they couldn't go 24 hours without their critical apps. When asked to rank apps, 57 percent of all respondents said email was critical, 41 percent described Facebook that way, while 31 percent said their device's alarm and clock apps were crucial to everyday life.

In terms of the number of apps used, 72 percent of respondents use 10 different apps a day while a mere 2 percent claimed to use 50.

Interestingly, when asked how life may change for the worse without access to their handsets and therefore their apps, 18 percent of French respondents claimed that they wouldn't be able to order dinner, compared with 16 percent in the US, 11 percent in Spain, 9 percent in Germany and only 8 percent in the UK.

Almost half of all respondents said that without a smartphone app they would be unable to check email, while 32 percent said that they wouldn't be able to wake up in the morning. Most worryingly, 19 percent said that without apps they couldn't maintain a relationship and 10 percent said that they would be unable to impress others.

When asked, 40 percent of German, 36 percent of US and 33 percent of French respondents said it would be easier to go without coffee than to delete all of the apps on their phone forever. The British, despite their preference for tea, came fourth, ahead of Spain (29%) in this section of the poll, with 30 percent saying giving up coffee would be easier than saying goodbye to their apps.

However, UK respondents were the least likely to use apps on their smartphones while driving (30%), compared with 64 percent of Germans, 61 percent of French respondents, 59 percent in Spain and 49 percent in the US.

Despite the overwhelming majority of respondents in all counties admitting app dependence, responses varied greatly when those polled were asked what is an appropriate age for a child to have their first smartphone. Three quarters of respondents said somewhere between the ages of 12 and 16, yet a full 2 percent of Germans believe it's OK for a child as young as one to have a phone and 8 percent of Americans believe 10-year-olds can have a smartphone. However, 6 percent of US and Spanish respondents believed that children under the age of 18 should not have a handset.

It also turns out that platform loyalty is essentially down to pride -- 37 percent of US smartphone owners claimed to be too proud to change platform. Other reasons for staying with an operating system include a lack of apps on a competing platform (24%), an unwillingness to learn how to use a different user interface (23%) and a fear of having to manually re-enter contacts and phone numbers (22%).

When asked which app they would like that currently doesn't exist, 46 percent wanted an app for automating functions around the home such as door locks, lighting and garage door operation. This choice was follwed by an app for tracking energy use (38%), an app for remotley starting a car (34%) and an app that directly charges purchases to a mobile phone bill (21%).

"The findings of the study show that people all over the world are becoming increasingly intertwined with their mobile apps and are demanding more from them," said Chet Kapoor, Apigee CEO, "Apps are becoming transformative to everything we do."


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