Mobile marketers take note: New data reveals on average, Android app users are 2x more loyal than iOS app users

After months of speculation and finally, the much-covered iPhone 4S launch, it seems like iPhone fever is everywhere. If you own one (or plan to), or make or market mobile apps, it's certainly hard not to get caught up in it all. Urban legend has it that iOS users are naturally loyal and engaged app consumers. So mobile app marketers often assume that they should throw their advertising dollars behind promoting the visibility and ranking of their iOS app.

Well, we have news for you!

It turns out that on average, Android users are two times more likely than iOS users to open an app ten times or more.

We discovered this by extensively analyzing more than four billion app actions (recorded through our platform) and applying our metric defining a loyal user based on the number of times he or she opens an app.

Let's explore.

Even though Android has surpassed iOS in U.S. market share, iOS still dominates among the premium brands that it serves – and so has earned its cache. But what this actually means is that there is plenty of inventory available on the Android platform, where global traffic can cost less than iOS traffic, based on standard supply and demand principles.

Think about it. A global Android campaign is untapped inventory awaiting for you to see the returns on your app marketing investment.

Although the upfront cost of an Android campaign might be similar to an iOS campaign, over time, global Android traffic costs become significantly less expensive. So not only can an Android app global marketing campaign deliver more loyal users, but the acquisition cost will also be significantly lower – indicating a better investment overall. It's also worth noting that the average cost to acquire loyal users on iOS has steadily increased in the last six months, according to the Fiksu Indexes, topping out in August at $1.54.

In recent weeks, much has been written about the surging Android market. Nielsen recently revealed that twice as many consumers purchased Android phones over iPhones in the past three months. Research from analyst firm Ovum predicted that Android app downloads will overtake iPhone apps for the first time this year. And new data from the NPD Group reported that the majority (52 percent) of the smartphones shipped in the U.S. during the second quarter of 2011 was running Android. Further validating this growth is a report by ad network Millennial Media, which revealed that in July 2011, Android captured 61 percent of the smartphone space – a hefty jump over the previous month.

As Fast Company put it, Android is having it's "Cinderella Moment."

Clearly, mobile app marketers need to take a closer look at the opportunity that an Android app presents. There’s evidently a lot of headroom and opportunity to cost-effectively acquire volumes of loyal app users on Android. Bottom line: If you haven’t considered running campaigns on Android, now is a good time to start thinking about it.

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