APAC mobile users to account for 50% of global app installs by 2020

APAC region is predicted to hold the largest quantity of mobile ad spend and the second fastest growth rate, leaping 1.8x from 2018 to reach US$30 billion in 2020.

According to a new market research study by AppsFlyer, a mobile attribution company, mobile users in APAC will account for 50% of global app installs by 2020, which is three times more than in any other region. Growth is forecasted to gradually decrease as the market matures, but will be sustained by substantial increment in media costs and mobile usage, as well as the overall number of paid campaigns, apps available, and mobile users.

“AppsFlyer’s App Install Predictions report highlights the rise of the Asia Pacific region as a leader in the global mobile ecosystem,” Ronen Mense, president and managing director, APAC at AppsFlyer, said. While China and India have emerged as key players in this increasingly dynamic mobile landscape, fast-maturing mobile economies in Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia, also augment an already booming market opportunity.

“What will differentiate the best from the rest is the intelligent use of high-quality data to make informed marketing decisions, and innovative approaches to measuring campaigns that attract and engage the valuable users,” Mense said.

APAC is a well-established, mobile-first market as the combination of better cellular infrastructure and the rise of cheaper mobile devices has contributed to an explosive growth in the app install market. While growth of app installs driven by marketing activities will be significant in the coming years, the growth rate will keep pace with the expected rise in media costs. AppsFlyer’s data shows global non-organic app installs will grow by 110% into 2020, while APAC non-organic installs are expected to grow by 2.4 times.

Why are app marketing budgets expected to grow in Southeast Asia?

Southeast Asia is joining the mobile game arena as mobile device view time, according to Kantar, has become particularly more pronounced in this region. This is especially true for Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia, where 3.9, 3.7, and 3.4 hours are spent on these devices, respectively. Compare these view times to the Asia Pacific average of 2.7 hours, despite higher downloads, in-app activity, and revenue from other markets, such as China and India.  In terms of app marketing, there is significant activity in Indonesia among e-commerce apps, while Vietnam is experiencing massive growth in the gaming vertical.

As mobile becomes more relevant to the global market, new devices, from companies such as OnePlus, Xiaomi and Huawei, are being increasingly more released which offer similar capabilities as higher-end Android and Apple devices but with a much friendlier price tag.

The fact that high-quality access to the internet through mobile apps is more affordable means that a large number of new users have started, and will continue, to appear in the Asia Pacific’s developing countries. An already-large market opportunity is continuing to grow.

In few other places around the world has mobile taken off the way it has in APAC, said the company in a blogpost about the study. Many mobile users are highly engaged with their devices and its capabilities — including for payments — making it a “mobile-first” region, and even “mobile-only” in some key country markets.

With both the ad spend and growth rates of non-organic installs expected to maintain the same ratio through 2020, marketers will have to be increasingly efficient in their marketing efforts amid rising media costs and mobile fraud.

But at the end of the day, said Mense, “To seize a competitive edge, marketers will need to become more data-savvy while being well informed of the effects of ad fraud.  Fraudsters are vying for billions of dollars in revenue, thus it is imperative for businesses to employ effective fraud protection solutions to prevent the bleeding cash cycle and inaccurate marketing decisions.”

(Photo courtesy: 123RF)