Researchers used IMS Health’s proprietary AppScript Score database to review nearly 27,000 consumer mHealth apps that are available in the United States. The Patient Adoption of mHealth: Use, Evidence and Remaining Barriers to Mainstream Adoption study shows that:
- Just 12% of mHealth apps account for 90% of consumer downloads, and 36 apps generate nearly half of all downloads.
- Forty percent of apps have fewer than 5000 downloads.
- Nearly a quarter of consumer health apps are focused on disease treatment and management, whereas the rest target fitness and wellness.
- Ten percent of mHealth apps can connect to a device or sensor that provides physical function data.
- Since 2013, the percentage of mHealth apps that can connect to social networks has risen from 26% to 34%. Of the top apps, 65% can be linked to social media.
- More than 90% of mHealth apps remain free to consumers.
The majority of apps have a single purpose, whether that is information or instruction, the report points out. That has not changed in the past 2 years, said Murray Aitkin, executive director of the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics, at a press conference held September 14.