Mobile is now the First Screen

10 years ago, our mobile phones didn’t have anywhere near the versatility and convenience that we have grown accustomed to in 2016. Not only have smartphones become the most common portable phone type, they are rapidly becoming the most common avenue to receive information. Surfing the internet, watching videos, listening to the radio; they’re all possible on your phone now. This massive change in how we find and view information hasn’t been recognised by many firms, since it happened so fast. In the space of 2-3 years, Smartphones have become the ‘first screen’ for most activities.

Back when Smartphones were seen as little more than a fad, firms could afford to ignore this burgeoning market. But 2016 has been another success story for the Smartphone: with over 1.4 billion Smartphones shipped and App usage doubling since Q1 2014, the Smartphone industry has been booming for some time. At present, less than 1% of Australian Accountants and 3% of UK Accountants have launched an App. This puts these forward-thinking firms at the forefront of the accountancy industry, simply because they have the edge when it comes to client interaction and marketing.

App usage keeps rising – and will continue to do so

In the two years since Q1 2014, time spent in Apps worldwide has more than doubled.

A growing install base of devices, particularly in developing markets, is a major driver of this trend. However, even when we look at the average time individual users are spending in Apps, we’ve seen a 25% increase over the same time period. We are spending more of our time in Apps than ever before.

We use our Apps for longer

As Apps offer increasingly in-depth and powerful features, the time we spend interacting with them is also going up. Between Q1 2014 and Q1 2016, we saw the worldwide average length of an App session on Android phones alone increase by approximately 35%. Longer, more complex App interactions are becoming more frequent and easier to perform (although the platform is still the ideal channel for quick or low-effort interactions), such as the Tax Calculators, Receipt Manager and the Mileage Tracker available with every App from us.

Mobile use is replacing other platforms

Smartphones are now our first stop for a number of key activities — and this trend is taking place worldwide.
For example, mobile is now the preferred way to go online. According to Google, more searches happen through mobile than desktops and laptops across key markets, and recent Ofcom data suggests that smartphones have overtaken laptops to become the UK’s “most important” device for accessing the Internet.

Globally, this means mobile has become the principal screen for consumers. We’re approaching a sea change in developed markets, and we’ve long since peaked in emerging markets. Older platforms and traditional channels of content generation or marketing are no longer as effective as they used to be.
App usage trumps mobile browser usage

Users are increasingly turning to apps ahead of mobile browsers, and they are using these apps to make purchasing decisions. In Q1 2016, over 90% of App users’ time was spent in-App, and only 10% of their time was spent in the world’s top 10 mobile browsers by Monthly Average Users (MAU).

Mobile Phone use is growing every day

Consumers Will Expect to Contact You via Mobile

As consumers’ use of messaging continues to grow, and as new tools such as ‘chatbots’ and ‘click-to-message’ ads become available, third-party messaging apps now have a place in a business’s communication arsenal. In APAC, B2C communications via popular messaging apps (such as LINE and KakaoTalk) have been prevalent for a number of years, and Facebook has been clear about the importance they assign to messaging apps in Western markets. If you’re looking to send the right message (at the right time and in the right place), consider that many consumers are turning to messaging apps over other, more traditional channels.

Put your firm on the Home Screen

With over 600 firms using our App and 30-40 new firms subscribing every month, your trial carried out by phone in just 15 minutes will show you how an App will transform your firm and attract high quality clients with numerous essential resources and features such as frequently updated tax tables, calculators and budget packs, full integration with cloud accounting services and others.

Data provided by App Annie –


Categories: Android, Apps, Blog, iPhone

David Oliver

David Oliver |

David is a senior executive of MyFirmsApp and author of 14 books, including Sunday Times titles in 29 languages. He has spoken to over 300,000 delegates worldwide and has been described as a ‘prophetic voice’ in the legal and accounting world.

David’s passion is to ‘Make Business Life Better’ for every professional firm, their clients and their staff. Whether they are Top 100 firms or owner-managed local firms, his motivating and inspiring style empowers legal professionals to understand how the latest technology can help them build irreplaceable, long-term relationships with their clients and prospective customers.

His focus, always, is to put your firm first by making business growth and client retention affordable, achievable and even enjoyable!