Covid-19 drives up global mobile app data consumption

The Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in a monumental increase in mobile app downloads across the globe, which amounts to 596 petabytes.

As per a report published by Sensor Tower, data consumed by mobile app downloads have gone up by 52 percent in comparison with the three-year average for first quarter usage. 

The data analysis comes from first-time installs of the top 250 mobile apps worldwide and excludes apps downloaded from APK mirrors or secondary app stores. Only popular apps were taken for the analysis and their file size was not added to the download measurements.

The amount of data used for first-time installs of the top 250 mobile apps worldwide in Q1 2020 grew 34 percent from the year-ago quarter to 596 petabytes, or 596 million gigabytes, and was up 52 percent from the three-year average of 391 petabytes for the first quarter.

While only the primary app markets were chosen in the study, re-installations, updates, and installations of apps to more than one device associated with the same Apple ID or Google account were not part of the metrics.

The standard three-year average for Q1 2020 stood at 391 petabytes of data. There has been a 34-percent rate of growth year-over-year from 2019, which climbed to 596 petabytes in the first quarter of 2019. The figure grew just under 28.45-percent compared to 2018's numbers. 

This data amounts to approximately 53 million hours of 4K quality Netflix streaming or enough to completely fill the storage on approximately 9.3 million top-of-the-line iPhones. 

In comparison, the total bandwidth used to download the top 250 apps from the App Store and Google Play globally in Q1 2019, 446 petabytes, represented a 4 percent decline from the 464 petabyte total for Q1 2018. Last quarter’s pronounced increase in bandwidth use is not directly tied to an increase in the average file size of the top 100 apps, which grew about 10 percent Y/Y from 1Q19.

In another report by the firm, it states that consumer spending in mobile apps through Apple’s App Store and Google Play will total close to $171 billion globally in 2024, double the amount spent in 2019 even though global economies have taken a major hit.

Via Sensor Tower 

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