U.S. Consumers glued to their mobile devices 5 hours a day

Flurry data shows that U.S. consumers continue to increase their time-spent on mobile devices.  In fact, the average U.S. consumer spends a whopping 5 hours a day on these devices. That is a 20% increase in time-spent compared to Q4 2015.

Browser share on mobile, which has been steadily declining, is now only 8%, down from 9% in Q4 2015. Apps continued to reign supreme as time spent in browsers faded; and the chat-bot revolution, which was touted in 2016 as “the app killer”, simply fizzled.

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Communitainment Drives Time-Spent

A look into the data shows that 51% of time-spent is in social, messaging, media and entertainment applications. This growth has been fueled by Communitainment, or communication for the sole purpose of entertainment. Snapchat, a driver of Communitainment, especially with the fascinating growth of Snapchat, charted for the first time and now commands 2% of an average US consumer’s daily time spent.

Facebook, including Instagram and Whatsapp, maintained its share of time-spent and continued to dominate the space with the addition of Facebook live and Instagram Stories. In addition, YouTube maintained its share at 3%, while independent Entertainment apps lost share, despite a 12% increase in absolute time-spent, as content, with the exception of sports and finance, migrated to YouTube, Facebook and Snapchat.

Games have seen a decline in share for a second year in a row even as money keeps pouring into the category. With users more willing to spend money on apps – partially due to frictionless payment methods like Apple Pay and Android Pay – shopping apps saw a significant growth.

In November 2014, apps put TV in their rearview mirrors, as consumers started spending more time on mobile devices than traditional television sets. At that time, most of the minutes were spent on Gaming and User Generated Content (UGC).

This year, the picture has changed. In addition to UGC, premium publishers started migrating their video content to social apps, such as “FYIS”.  In fact the line has completely blurred between what has traditionally been defined as premium content and UGC.

Mobile Goes After TV’s Dollars

After taking TV’s minutes, mobile and its apps have gone after TV’s dollars. While industry analysts believed that digital would eat TV advertising dollars, more specifically, it is the cable subscriptions that mobile apps are after.

With YouTube offering its first OTT skinny bundle, Hulu sneaking a peak of its planned OTT service and veterans Sling TV and DirectTV Now gaining traction, this is even more apparent.


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