According to Q3 Data from ironSource, more than 10,000 apps have switched to new categories following Google’s switch-up on app categories. Data shows that the new Dating and Food & Drinks categories have seen the highest adoption rates.
Global tech firm ironSource culled results in its Q3 insights from the company’s Fastest Growing Apps platform, a free data and analytics tool that enables app developers to understand app market trends by identifying the categories and apps with the quickest acceleration of growth.
The report reveals the impact that addition of eight new categories has had on the Google Play Store. The upshot? Many apps have switched categories in order to improve discoverability.
“With over a thousand apps added to the Play Store every day, app discovery is either a matter of luck or money,” explained Omer Kaplan, the CMO and Co-Founder of ironSource. “These new categories are a much needed improvement to the Play Store user experience, and the move highlights the increasing importance of app discovery as a critical problem to be solved if we’re to continue seeing the app economy grow sustainably.”
To spur app discovery and fine-tune user navigation, Google added eight new categories to the Google Play Store (and renamed two others) in July, 2016.
Google added Art & Design, Auto & Vehicles, Beauty, Dating, Events, Food & Drink, House & Home, and Parenting. The company also renamed Transportation to Maps & Navigation and Media & Video to Video Players & Editors.
“Given that previously, the Lifestyle category used to include diverse apps ranging from dating and food ordering apps to shopping and connected home apps, this update brings much needed specificity to the Play Store,” noted ironSource.
“Long-term, a situation where apps of diverse functionality are lumped together and effectively buried in a massive master category isn’t tenable for Google Play users, and more importantly is enormously frustrating for app developers desperately trying to compete with over 2 million apps,” said Kaplan.
There are interesting caveats to the switches, however. Tinder did not switch its app category, choosing to stay within Lifestyle, “likely because the majority of users don’t encounter Tinder organically, but rather through a specific search.”
In fact, small scale apps were the force behind most of the category adjustments.
“The majority of apps re-categorizing themselves have been small, mostly hovering below the 100K user threshold,” according to ironSource. “This is unsurprising considering that lesser-known apps struggle the most with app discovery, while app giants claim a chunk of real estate at the top of store charts and the organic discoverability that comes with it.”