Messaging Apps Fuel Massive Growth in Mobile Industry

January 24, 2014 - 2 minutes read

messaging ios apps

2013 was another record-breaking year for the mobile app industry — one which saw year-over-year growth of 115 percent. While many different app categories contributed to the impressive growth rate, messaging and social media apps led the charge.

The messaging apps category, which includes social media and photo sharing software, grew by 203 percent in 2013.

This growth rate far exceeded those seen in other categories:

  • Utilities and productivity app usage increased by 149 percent
  • Entertainment app usage rose by 78 percent
  • Retail and lifestyle app usage saw a 77 percent growth rate
  • Gaming apps grew by 66 percent
  • Sports, health and fitness app use increased by 49 percent
  • News, magazine, and current events apps grew by 31 percent

The growth in social media and messaging apps was led by software products including Facebook Messenger, WeChat, WhatsApp, KakaoTalk, LINE and SnapChat. Industry analysts believe this enormous growth rate is part of the reason Facebook recently valued SnapChat at a whopping $3 billion.

So what does this all mean for mobile app developers?

First, social media and messaging apps are growing at massive rates, but that category could become saturated as increasing numbers of iPhone app developers try to snag a piece of the pie. Second, it implies that there is still a great deal of growth potential in other categories.

While the dynamic nature of the mobile software industry makes predicting the future difficult, there is one certainty: year-over-year growth rates are not expected to slow down anytime soon. That meansĀ mobile app developers in Boston and across the country will continue to enjoy access to one of the fastest-growing industries in the history of free-market commerce.

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