The Exploding Mobile App Economy – To Be $6.3 Trillion by 2021

The global mobile app economy by 2021 would touch the whooping mark of $6.3 Trillion, according to a new report from app analytics firm App Annie.

The firm estimated the app economy in 2016 globally was worth $1.3 trillion across three major types of app monetization: all mobile app stores, in-app advertising and mobile commerce. Also by 2021 the user base will be double from 3.4 billion people (using apps in 2016) to 6.3 billion people.

Today, 3.4 billion app users spend on an average of $379 in apps. This will grow to $1008 per app user by 2021.


Knowing the mobile app economy

The simple definition would be “a range of economic activities surrounded by mobile apps.” The mobile app hype have changed the entire process and shape of doing business. App is the new business model.

See Also: A new revenue generator for your business

According to a recent article in The Washington Post, “Travel apps and gaming will continue to be hot. People in in South Korea, Mexico, Brazil, Japan and India are already spending more than four hours a day on their mobile apps and usage in those countries is projected to rise.”

As per the report, time spent on mobile apps will reach 3.5 trillion hours in 2021 (from 1.6 trillion hours in 2016).

We can definitely say that the global economy is increasingly the mobile-first economy…

The figure of course varies drastically from market to market. There are several questions that drives this revenue model:

  • How often are users engaging to your app?
  • How effective is the give mobile ad format for a particular user? Also at what time and place?
  • To what degree users in particular geographical location shall make purchases within the app?


According to the report, the average user generated $0.08 per hour globally, across app stores, in-app ads and mobile commerce in 2016. However this figure varies massively. For example people in Japan generated an average of $13.98 per hour. Whereas USA and China generated $2.36/user per hour and $2.01/user per hour respectively.

It is also believed that western market will lag behind this shift, because they are still wrapped up in legacy systems for few things like banking, payment transfers, food purchases, etc. Because a lot of wealth is concentrated in older population who are slower to move to mobile environment.

Mobile commerce is the single largest driver of the growth of the mobile app economy. It will grow from $344 to $946 by 2021.


Asia will grow the quickest, reaching $3.2 trillion in 2021, followed by the Americas hitting $1.7 trillion, then EMEA (Europe, Middle East, and Africa) which will reach $1.0 trillion.

During this time iOS app store will continue to be the largest single store, growing to over $60 billion in 2021. However Google play plus third-part Android combined, forecast to take over iOS App store this year (2017). Thanks to mobile-first population of China largely.

The mobile app economy – once on a lifetime opportunity

Consumers, advertisers and brands are set to see a remarkable changes in coming 5 years in terms of technology delivering new use cases to the consumers across the globe. The major concern would be mobile app marketing due to increased time user spend on the app. With these reasons more and more businesses prefer to invest in mobile app development for the business to reach the customers in best possible manner. We believe Augmented Reality (AR), Artificial Intelligence (AI), mobile payments and UI/UX development will drive strong growth of this market.

Still not clear what could be the best mobile solution for your business? You can get in touch with our expert business consultants.

  • By Twitchtime
  • July 19, 2017
  • 17

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