Battle of the Sexes: How Men and Women Use Apps

Data is a fascinating thing in our world of “connectivity.” Take the issue of how men and women use apps, and how differently the numbers play out. As one report noted only a few years ago by VentureBeat, women “install 40% more apps, spend 87% more than men.” This was true even though men’s most commonly installed variety of apps were linked to business, games, and travel – apps in which money might easily be spent.

However, over the years that apps have been available, it has become quite obvious that men and women do use them differently. One organization took a deep dive into the issue and found the following:


    Women adopt technology more openly than men – Women, it seems, are more likely to try new mobile tech faster than men, and even make the most of all of the features designed into the apps they use. Noting that women are “more keen on mobile gaming, while men are happier playing games on laptops, PCs or gaming consoles,” they did point out that men’s mobile game choices also vary widely. And speaking of mobile gaming…

    Game preferences vary between genders – Women tend to download puzzles and word games while men’s gaming app preferences lean towards war games and shooting games. Naturally both say that they end up spending more time than they would like on their gaming adventures. 

    App types (apart from games) vary by gender, too – Women seem to download more catalog apps, cooking and recipe apps, and lifestyle apps. Men seem to favor productivity and business apps, financials apps, and sports apps. Both groups equally appreciate and use GPS, dining, and dating or social apps.

    Yet, another report noted that some of the “most well-known and popular apps in the App Store tend towards a 50-50 gender ratio split. These apps are available on just about every platform, constantly top app store charts, and are the ones you often think of when you hear the word “app.” Flipboard, Foursquare, OpenTable, and the slightly more niche Foodspotting all reported that approximately half of their users were female.”

    Mobile payment apps like Venmo also report a 50/50 split of users, while reading or book apps are more commonly used by women as well as health and fitness apps. New magazine apps, on the other hand, report that around 75% of their audience is male. Photography apps are also a preferred choice for men.

    What is interesting about all of the data, or should be to those eager to determine if their audience would be inclined to enjoy access to an app, is that both genders use their devices similarly. That is, they read content, play games, and do shopping (among scores of other activities) through apps on mobile devices. So, those considering the creation of an app can rest assured that gender-specific thinking is not at all necessary.

    As one expert said, “The idea of intuitiveness is at the base of all smart mobile devices and all the apps. Your app design needs to be user-friendly, intuitive, and it must follow the best practices. There is no point in creating apps that are limited to one gender.”

    If you are interested in determining whether your financial or banking firm can benefit from the design and use of an app, speak with the experts at RAIN, where you can enjoy full-service mobile marketing support that ensures the very best ROI. Discover how to best attract and engage your clientele and convert prospects into customers through an array of mobile technologies and methods.



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