Analysts: App Downloads To Accelerate, Driven By Android and Apple

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Driven by the rise of Apple and Android smartphones, touchscreens, and app stores, the numbers of app downloads will reach 48 billion by 2015, says a new study by analyst firm Cahners-Instat.

Not exactly coincidentally, smartphones will increase from 23 percent of total phone shipments in 2010 to 45 percent, also by 2015. Meanwhile, already this year, 90 percent of all smartphones shipped are outfitted with touchscreens.

Although 48 billion apps sounds like a real lot of software to be downloaded in a single year, industry statistics show that users have already downloaded some 14 billion iOS apps from Apple’s App Store over the past three years and 4.5 billion Android OS from Google’s Android Market since that venue opened its doors online.

Also not surprisingly, Instat’s survey results show that “Apple and Android users are significantly more likely than BlackBerry users to have downloaded mobile applications,” according to an Instat report.

Somewhat more surprisingly, perhaps, almost half of all survey respondents said they had downloaded apps over WiFi, as opposed to 3G or 4G.

On the other hand, it only makes sense many users do combine WiFi with 3G/4G wireless access to stay underneath wireless carriers’ data caps.

Ultimately, users will be downloading apps not just for smartphones, but for all devices, according to recent report by Forrester Research, another leading analyst firm.

The analysts at Forrester pointed to new app stores — in the near or distant future — for devices ranging from desktop PCs to cars and home appliances.

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