Smartphones, Apps Making Consumers Healthier

The Apigee survey also found more than two in five adult smartphone owners expect to spend more online this year.

apigee mobile apps survey

More than a third of adult smartphone owners report that they are healthier thanks to their smartphone and apps, according to a survey of 1,000 Americans 18 or older from Apigee.

The survey also found more than two in five adult smartphone owners expect to spend more online this year, and one in five adult smartphone owners expect a decrease in spending at brick-and-mortar locations.

"The most surprising findings to me were around health care. While the healthcare industry has always been accustomed to rapid change, the pace at which smartphone owners have embraced mobile devices and apps to manage their health is stunning," Bryan Kirschner, director of the Apigee Institute, told eWEEK.

He noted the number of Americans that say apps and devices have changed how they manage their health has increased by forty-two million since 2013—70 percent growth in 24 months.

Moreover, one in four Millennials would prefer a doctor who uses fitness device data as a regular part of their practice, he noted.

A solid majority of adult smartphone owners prefer to bank using their smartphone and apps, with 71 percent of Millennials expressing a preference for banking with smartphone and apps.

"The evolution of mobile wallets is a great example of how mobile shopping is evolving to become easier and more secure for consumers," Kirschner said. "What is really telling here is that retailers are acting from the outside in, meaning they're acting in response to how much consumers love smartphones and apps rather than what we could call inside out, meaning they're motivated by their own business mechanics."

In addition, 43 percent of overall respondents and half of Millennials downloaded an app from a big retail chain in the past year.

Year-over-year, the percentage of respondents who use a banking app daily rose from 13 percent to 20 percent, while the percentage who reported going to a bank branch for a reason other than using at ATM fell five points to 41 percent.

"I think we're going to see companies enabling people to use their existing smartphone apps and fitness devices to tap into new brand-specific services. We're already seeing a handful of companies doing this today," Kirschner said. "For example, Walgreens enables consumers to connect existing fitness trackers to its balance rewards for healthy choices program, giving people loyalty points for achieving certain fitness goals. Similarly, Jawbone UP has a developer platform facilitated by Munchery that allows users to seamlessly track nutritional information from each meal."