Which app categories score highest for retention, sessions and time spent?

Anne Freer | December 10, 2015

App Business, App Marketing


Adjust, the business intelligence platform for app marketers, has just released a new Mobile Benchmarks report that shows which app categories score highest for user retention, user sessions and time spent.

App retention, which specifies the percentage of users still accessing their app after 7 days of install in this study, scored highest for reading and magazine apps on Android (31%). iOS users are more interested in social apps (17%). Food and drink, entertainment and travel apps proved weak retention across both operating systems. However, Android owners generally stuck around a little longer than iOS users.

App retention is highest for publications (Android) and social apps (iOS)


Source: adjust.com

Adjust also measured the sessions a user triggers on the 7th day after app install. Here, social apps (2.8-3.0 sessions) as well as games (2.4-2.5) scored highest for both Android and iOS. Sessions per user are highly influenced by day-to-day usage of apps. Categories such as travel may experience spikes in usage depending on the targeted user. For example, those currently traveling or planning a trip are more likely to access travel apps more often.

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Social and game apps dominate sessions per user


Source: adjust.com

When it comes to actively using an app, adjust found that games had the longest user session at 717 seconds on Android and 615 seconds on iOS. Surprisingly, educational apps scored second highest across both operating systems and eCommerce ranked third.

Mobile devices are made to the played 


Source: adjust.com

Taking a closer look at game app rates, the company found that retention rates for games varied between 20%-40% after the first day of install, dropping to just 5%-15% after a month.

Retention rates for games drop to 20%-40% a week post download


Source: adjust.com

However, once a game has passed the 7-day retention limit, actual user sessions remain fairly stable across most gaming categories. On iOS, family and action games experience a stronger decline in sessions up to 30 days.

Gaming user sessions stabilise


Source: adjust.com

Most game apps experience a bump in time spent on day 7. Brain and strategy apps noted a lift on Android up to day 30, whilst most games on iOS decline slightly in the time a user spends on the app. Android app usage by time spent remains fairly flat following the initial bump.

Android game apps flat out, whilst iOS time spent slowly declines


Source: adjust.com

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