iOS beats Android in app retention by more than 50%

Now that Google and Apple have both unveiled their future plans for their respective mobile platforms, it’s up to the consumers, and more importantly, the third-party app developers to make their decisions. Which OS do they make their priority?

Back in the good old days, this was an easy decision to make: go with the one that had the most users. More users typically meant more downloads (and $). But now that Android and iOS are almost even, developers have to look at other metrics…

One of the more popular measurements to gauge has become app-retention — how often are users actually opening your app after they download it? And in this category, iOS is still the king.

Localytics reports:

“But not all apps are created equally. Delving deeper into the retention and user metrics, iPhone and iPad users are 52% more loyal to their apps than Android users. A healthy 35% of Apple iOS users launched an app more than 10 times after downloading, compared to 23% of Android users. The average Android app also suffers from 24% one-time usage rate compared to just 21% one-time usage rate for iPhone and iPad.”

Given the well-documented fragmentation issue on Android — thousands of different devices, with different screen sizes, running different versions of Android — it’s not surprising that the platform’s app retention is low.

Imagine how many apps users come across in the Google Play store that either aren’t compatible with their particular device, or don’t look right due to screen size/resolution, and are then, immediately deleted.

Apple, on the other hand, is fairly particular about what apps make it into its App Store (despite a few missteps). And it even has a list of guidelines for developers to stick to, so that all iOS apps have a similar look and feel.