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To help curb the spread of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, public health agencies and governments across the globe have launched contact-tracing smartphone apps. The global acceleration of time spent per user on mobile — which increased 20% to 4 hours 20 minutes in April 2020 compared to 2019 — has become an opportunity to engage with citizens and supplement worldwide tracking efforts.
Why It Matters:
Download ranking data shows early interest and adoption in regions such as Japan, Germany, Italy, Australia, France, India, Singapore, South Korea and Austria — countries who have all launched government-backed COVID-tracing smartphone apps.
The COVID-19 Contact App in Japan, Corona-Warn-App in Germany, StopCovid France in France, Immuni App in Italy, COVIDSafe in Australia, Aarogya Setu in India and TraceTogether in Singapore ranked #1 within their respective app store categories (either Medical or Health and Fitness) by daily iPhone downloads every day since their launches.
One of the earliest COVID-tracing apps to launch, Aarogya Setu in India, has ranked #1 by daily downloads among Health and Fitness Apps across both iPhones and Google Play since its launch on April 2, 2020 to date (June 23, 2020). The app has also maintained a position in the top 10 for overall rankings by daily downloads in India on iPhone and top 20 for overall rankings by daily downloads on Google Play.
In the US — unlike these markets — a centralized national COVID tracing app does not exist. Rather, states have produced tracing apps for their respective constituents. Utah is one example with its Healthy Together app ranking in the top 110 Health and Fitness apps by US iPhone downloads as of June 23, 2020 despite only being designed for use by the state of Utah (whose population is <1% of the US population). At its peak, the app ranked #50 in Health and Fitness and #56 in Medical apps by daily iPhone downloads, as the app has changed app store categories since its launch. Follow the daily rankings of Healthy Together and other COVID-19 tracing apps with a free App Annie account.
For many COVID-19 tracing apps, in addition to initial downloads consumers will need to agree to continuously share data — including positive test results or exposure — in order for tracing to be most effective at scale.
While early download rankings show a promising start in some regions, the ongoing success of any COVID-19 tracking app will hinge on both consumers and local governments. Local governments, like all other app publishers, will need to engage in widespread user acquisition through mobile-first forms of User Acquisition (UA) like App Store Optimization (ASO) and paid ads, as well as leverage local networks like doctors’ offices and public health distribution systems to drive meaningful adoption and sustained usage.
For more information on the impact of the virus on the mobile economy, please see our blog post here: The Impact of Coronavirus on the Mobile Economy.
To hear more from our panel of mobile experts — including a special guest from Snap, Inc. — on the impact of coronavirus on the mobile economy, watch our webinar.
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This post is the latest in a Mobile Minute series that features App Annie’s perspective on how mobile is impacting current events and consumer trends. Check in weekly for our take on the latest news cycles and how mobile transformation is shaping industries around the world.
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