What to Expect in Mobile Apps in 2017

Where is the mobile app economy headed for the rest of this year — how much revenue will it generate, will chatbots finally take over, and what new technologies are on the horizon? The App Annie mobile analytics services and market intelligence has answers to that and more in its 2017 Predictions for the App Economy. Read on for a summary of predictions around mobile apps in 2017.

Let’s start off with the big number: App Annie says that mobile app spending, including app stores and in-app advertising will hit a whopping $166 billion this year. Most than 60% percent of that — $101 billion — will come from in-app advertising. Social media, video platforms and games will get a substantial share of in-app revenue. Mobile video ads will see the biggest growth in in-app revenue. And brand advertising will be strong as well, accounting for 12.5% of all in-app mobile spending.

Spending on mobile app stores will reach $65 billion. Games will still be king, but subscription revenue from dating and media apps will grow faster than game revenue, says App Annie.

When it comes to shopping apps, App Annie says that the greatest growth will come from existing brick-and-mortar retailers looking to use mobile apps in 2017 to reinvent their in-store experiences. Banks and fast-food restaurants will also see growth in app use.

“Chatbots will still play a role, but artificial intelligence capabilities will not be sophisticated enough to carry on complete customer service conversations in 2017."

“Chatbots will still play a role, but artificial intelligence capabilities will not be sophisticated enough to carry on complete customer service conversations in 2017.”

There’s been a lot of chat about chatbots in recent months, with some people believing they’re on the way to replacing mobile apps, as I’ve written in a previous blog post. But App Annie predicts that chatbots aren’t yet ready for prime time, saying “Chatbots will still play a role, but artificial intelligence capabilities will not be sophisticated enough to carry on complete customer service conversations in 2017. Instead, chatbot use cases will remain limited to notifications and routing users to the right human touch points.” Instead of chatbots, messaging apps will be used for customer service, App Annie believes.

“Chatbots will still play a role, but artificial intelligence capabilities will not be sophisticated enough to carry on complete customer service conversations in 2017. Instead, chatbot use cases will remain limited to notifications and routing users to the right human touch points.” – App Annie

As for up-and-coming technologies for mobile apps, App Annie points to augmented reality and virtual reality as likely contenders. Voice search is growing, it says, but still hasn’t hit the mainstream. App Annie expects voice interactions on smartphones will account for only 2% of all sessions.

To read more App Annie predictions, click here.

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