Millennials are more open to sharing their location when using apps

Anne Freier | January 29, 2020

App Business

Millennials are more likely than any other generation to share their mobile location with apps. That’s according to research by Herow, the contextual marketing platform.

The study found that 44% of millennials typically shared their location compared to 40% of Gen and 27% of Gen X. Baby boomers ranked last at 17%.

The research notes that 74% of US smartphone users are more likely to share their location if the app provides a clear way to control how the data is used.

Meanwhile, 70% of Americans were more likely to share their location with an app if it explained why it needed location data and offered something in return.

But what is also evident from the study is that heavy app users (>20 apps) tend to believe that location tracking improves their app performance, compared to this using fewer apps (<10 apps 19%).

Interestingly, Android users were 4% more likely to share their physical address compared to other operating systems.

Weather app users allow their location to be accessed or not also depends on the app categories. For example, gaming and dating apps have a much higher rate of users never allowing location tracking (49% each).

Meanwhile, weather and transport app users tend to share their location always (45% and 28%, respectively). This shows that going from place A to place B is perceived as a worthwhile experience to use location data.

There are certain issues app developers must overcome if they want user consent to share their location. That includes the perception that location data is an invasion of their privacy (52%), their data could be misused (51%), users may be surveilled (47%).

Meanwhile, surveillance (55%) and identity fraud (54%) represent the two biggest concrete threats to location data.