It’s hard to find a person without at least one smartphone application installed on their device, whether for gaming, shopping, social media or something else entirely. With the increasing popularity of mobile apps, there has been an abundance of different types that have emerged over the years.
There are several types of mobile applications, and it can take much work to keep track of them all. This post will discuss the different types of mobile apps and briefly overview each one. Remember that this is not an exhaustive list, but it will give you a good idea of the most popular mobile application categories currently available.
What are Mobile Applications (Mobile Apps)?
Mobile applications are self-contained programs or software applications that can be installed and run on mobile devices, like smartphones, tablets, and other handheld devices. They are specifically for each device’s operating system to provide a unique user experience.
The purpose of mobile apps is to provide a user-friendly and convenient experience for users using their mobile devices. Apps can perform various tasks, including shopping, booking events, checking the weather forecast, finding directions, playing games, listening to music and more. Mobile apps are often with specific features in mind that make them stand out from websites and other digital products. For example, a gaming app could have motion-sensing technology, or a fitness app could monitor your heart rate. No matter the purpose, apps provide an easy way to access information or perform tasks quickly and conveniently.
Mobile apps offer several benefits to users, including convenience, access to a wide range of functions and features, improved user experience and engagement, increased productivity, increased brand visibility, enhanced security and privacy, and cost savings compared to web-based solutions.
- Convenience: Mobile apps provide users quick access to the information or services they need without opening a browser or visiting a website.
- Accessibility: Mobile apps offer an extensive range of functions and features, making them more comprehensive than websites or web-based solutions.
- User experience and engagement: Mobile apps provide a more engaging user experience than websites or web-based solutions due to their interactive features and design elements.
- Increased productivity: Mobile apps enable users to perform tasks faster and more efficiently, resulting in increased productivity.
- Increased brand visibility: Mobile apps can increase a brand’s visibility by providing users with an easy way to access information or services associated with the brand.
- Enhanced security and privacy: Mobile apps can provide improved security and privacy for users as they can store data in their devices and lock it with a passcode or fingerprint.
- Cost savings: Mobile apps can provide cost savings compared to web-based solutions as they require fewer resources to develop, deploy and maintain.
Types of Mobile Applications
Mobile applications typically have three main categories: native, hybrid and web.
Main Types: Native vs Web vs Hybrid
Native Mobile Apps
Native apps are built specifically for a certain platform or device, such as iOS or Android. Native apps are usually from the app store of their respective platform. The advantage of native apps is that they offer the best performance and have access to all the features of the device they are running on.
Web Mobile Apps
Hybrid Mobile Apps
Common Types: Applications that Enjoy a Higher User Engagement
Other than the main types, the common types are those applications that often enjoy a higher user engagement, such as games, productivity apps, social media and many more. These application categories are designed to meet the specific needs of users and offer a better user experience.
Game apps are the most popular type of mobile app today. They usually feature attractive graphics, engaging gameplay and great rewards for completing in-game objectives. Popular game genres include puzzles, board games, strategy and action/adventure. Some examples are Candy Crush, Angry Birds and Words With Friends.
Social Media Apps
Social media apps are for keeping in touch with friends, colleagues and family. Popular social media apps include Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. These applications offer features such as messaging, photo sharing, video sharing and more.
Educational apps help students learn new information in a fun and interactive way. These may include flashcard applications, language learning programs, quizzes and more. Some popular educational apps include Duolingo, Khan Academy and Quizlet.
E-commerce apps have become increasingly popular in recent years with the advent of mobile shopping. These apps allow users to purchase goods and services directly from their smartphones. Popular e-commerce apps include Amazon, eBay and Etsy.
Entertainment apps provide users with a variety of entertainment options on their smartphones. These may include streaming services, movie rental websites and more. Popular entertainment apps include YouTube, Netflix and Hulu.
Health and Fitness Apps
Health and fitness apps help users track their physical activity levels, diet and other health-related metrics. Some popular options include MyFitnessPal, Fitbit and Apple Health.
Banking and Finance Apps
Banking and finance apps help users manage their money, track investments and more. Popular banking and finance apps include Mint, Acorns and Robinhood.
Travel apps help users plan their trips and ensure they have all the necessary information when arriving at their destination. These may include flight booking, hotel reservation and rental car services. Popular travel apps include Expedia, TripAdvisor and Airbnb.
Utility apps help users complete a variety of tasks quickly and easily. Popular utility apps include GasBuddy, MapMyRun and Coupon Sherpa. These may include weather apps, health/fitness trackers or coupon/rewards programs.
Tools apps help users get the job done quickly and efficiently. Popular tools apps include Dropbox, Waze and Google Maps.
Parenting apps help parents monitor their children’s activities, keep track of schedules and more. Popular parenting apps include OurPact, Life360 and Kidslox.
Photo and Video Apps
Photo and video apps help users capture, edit and share photos and videos. Popular photo and video apps include Snapchat, Instagram and VSCO.
Maps and Navigation Apps
Maps and navigation apps help users get from point A to point B. Popular maps and navigational apps include Google Maps, Waze and Apple Maps.
Mobile apps have revolutionized how people interact with technology, offering various functions and features. They provide a more engaging user experience than websites or web-based solutions, enabling users to perform tasks faster and more efficiently. They can also increase a brand’s visibility and provide improved security and privacy for users.