Gap exists in mobile app development

Findings of global survey that polled mobile users show developers can do better to target female gamers and create utility-type applications, says Singapore-based BuzzCity.
Written by Vivian Yeo, Contributor

There is room for app developers to better cater to mobile phone users, according to findings of a recent global survey.

Conducted by Singapore-based mobile advertising company BuzzCity between May and June this year, the online study found that 13 percent of respondents did not download games or applications on their mobile phones because they were unable to find what they want.

Over 1,400 users from 10 countries--Bangladesh, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Malaysia, Nigeria, South Africa, Thailand and the United States--participated in the survey.

In its report, BuzzCity noted opportunities "clearly exist" for developers to produce mobile games or apps that cater to females. Some 29 percent of the respondents in the survey were female.

BuzzCity said a considerable proportion of respondents were students, self-employed, homemakers or jobseekers. In view of that, the company said developers should create utility apps that assist such users. Services geared toward freelancers and small-business owners would also be well-received, added the company.

Another area that developers should pay greater attention to is recreational games, said BuzzCity, which act as both stress relievers and mental stimulators.

In the survey, games were used loosely to also include software used as recreational or productivity tools.

Mobile gameplay mainstream
The survey also found that about nine out of 10 mobile surfers downloaded and played games on their devices. Only 9 percent indicated they had never downloaded games on their phones, and had no intentions to do so in future.

Nearly half of respondents said they downloaded mobile games on a regular basis--34 percent did so weekly, while 12 percent did likewise fortnightly.

Forty percent of respondents also admitted to playing games on their mobiles daily, while another 38 percent said they would play whenever they got the chance.

Games that "depict activity" were the most sought after, said BuzzCity. Over 40 percent of users indicated they downloaded action, adventure or fantasy games, while sports and racing games were favored by 21 percent of respondents. A tenth of respondents preferred brain and board games, and 9 percent opted for lifestyle and social-type apps.

According to the report, feature phones continued to reign for mobile gameplay. The handset brands commonly used by respondents were Nokia, with a share of 52 percent, Samsung (13 percent) and Sony Ericsson (7 percent).

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