The global app economy will reach $6.3 trillion in 2021, according to a new report from App Annie. That's a big increase from 2016, when the global app economy reached $1.3 trillion. The report examined three major types of monetization: all mobile app stores, in-app advertising and mobile commerce.
App Annie says the device user base will nearly double by 2021 and people will spend more time using apps as mobile plays a bigger part of work and play.
Total mobile commerce spend per user in the US was $613 in 2016. That's projected to grow to $2,012 by 2021.
As its matured, mobile has become less of a novelty and more an everyday tool. As network providers develop and deploy faster networks like 5G, people will continue to flock to all types of mobile apps to make their lives easier and more productive.
Enterprises are likely to expand work-based apps, though those may develop more slowly. A survey from Gartner found that, despite increasing demand for enterprise mobile apps, more than a quarter of enterprises globally have not built, customized or virtualized any mobile apps over the last year. Businesses will need to pick up the pace to meet worker demand for more flexible tools.
Some tech companies recognize that enterprises are struggling with app development, and are responding to those needs. For example, SAP and Apple partnered to develop a software development kit (SDK) for iOS. The SDK will give developers, designers and businesses scalable tools to quickly build custom, enterprise-grade iOS applications using Apple's new programming language, Swift.