Tech
              Kae Shibata 20, left, and Yutaro Noji, 21, show off Apple  Kae Shibata 20, left, and Yutaro Noji, 21, show off Apple's iPhone 5 after they bought at a store in Tokyo Friday morning, Sept. 21, 2012. (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara)   

Report: Continued growth expected for app market

A recent study found that nearly half of online consumers in the United States have downloaded an application for their mobile device, and most prefer using apps to their phone’s Internet browser.

The study — conducted by Frank N. Magid and Associates, and published  by the Application Developers Alliance, an industry association for application developers — surveyed 1,000 online consumers and found that 62 percent own an app-capable mobile device.

Of those users, 74 percent use mobile apps, but “only a quarter has paid for an app.”

Non-app users said either cost or their perceived inability to use an app was keeping them away. Of those non-users, one- third said they plan on using an app in the future.

Overall, however, the study found that users prefer apps primarily because they are easier to use than mobile browsers, which can often accomplish the same tasks as apps.

“Apps allow mobile device users to do more with the technology at their fingertips,” said Josh Hartwell, Board Member and CEO of Mobile Deluxe, a development and publishing company of games for smartphones.

“We’ve barely begun to scratch the surface of what we can accomplish with this nascent and growing industry,” said Hartwell.

Jon Potter, president of the Application Developers Alliance, also expressed his optimism about the growth of the so-called app economy.

Potter said that the results of the study were not surprising, and demonstrate “that app developers and our industry are still at the beginning, as more people are planning to enjoy even more apps in the very near future.”

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