Despite Google Gains, iPhone Still Edges Out Android Devices In App And Overall Smartphone Usage

Android has decisively overtaken iOS as the world’s most popular smartphone platform, both in terms of existing devices and sales, but it seems like usage habits are harder to break. A report out today from Forrester on mobile marketing techniques includes some interesting numbers on app usage, which show that overall, iOS users are still the more avid users across a range of app categories, as well as various smartphone functions.
In a survey of 13,000 iPhone users and 15,000 Android users in the U.S., Forrester found that Weather apps remain the most popular category among consumers across both platforms, followed by social networking, navigation/mapping and gaming apps.
While weather doesn’t seem like the kind of thing that commands a lot of minutes of engagement, you can see where it would stand out because of habitual usage. (This could also go some way to explaining why Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, during the company’s last earnings call, touted the company’s weather app as being the number-one in 20 different countries, up 150% since its relaunch in April.)
What’s notable is that in each of the cases, iOS appears to be a more engaged group of users — some 71% of iOS users versus 65% of Android users are checking weather apps regularly; social networking breaks down to 63% and 56%; and mapping is 60% and 52% — but ultimately the platforms are consistent in terms of what is most popular.