Nielsen Provides Mobile Apps Data Download

The good people at Nielsen have just released some interesting survey based data about mobile applications and their relative popularity. Nielsen surveyed "4,200 people who had downloaded an application in the past 30 days."

Nielsen says that 21% of American mobile phone owners had a smartphone in Q4 2009. The number is now closer to 24% per Nielsen, our data and InsightExpress. The most popular smartphone apps, according to the Nielsen survey, are Facebook, Google Maps and Weather Channel. 

The following graphic shows the category breakdown with smartphones in yellow and feature phones in blue. One interesting thing to observe: regardless of handset type the category leaders are essentially the same. Smartphones just seem to make it easier for people to do what they're already doing otherwise. 

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While weather and maps are both local and two of the top three categories, many more of the categories on the list address offline activity: travel, entertainment/food, movies and some portion of the shopping category. 

Below are the top apps by smartphone platform, according to the survey:

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Notice that Facebook is the top app on all platforms other than Android. Google search is also not among the top apps except on the Android platform.