Since I’m working on a startup in the exercise tracking space, I’ve been very interested in the competition. What are they doing? What are they doing well? Poorly? And how positively are their apps being perceived? Most importantly though, I’ve wanted to know how much are their apps used. That information is good for many reasons. If a really popular service with a lot of users isn’t getting a lot of time spent in their apps, it could tell us something valuable. Maybe their service derives it’s benefit from you not needing to use the app directly. Or maybe the app isn’t driving enough value and that is a good place where we could differentiate ourselves.
Unfortunately, most of the places I’ve looked have only provied download information. One such place is Distimo. That is good information because it shows whether the app received enough buzz to get downloaded a substantial amount and we could learn from those companies that did well what it takes to get people to use the app at least once. The second part of the equation is knowing which apps receive the most ongoing usage. That information could help us to figure out what gets people to keep using an app. So far, that information hasn’t been easily available. Today, Onavo launched a service called Onavo Insights to do just that. It gives you the ability to access data on usage, engagement and retention of apps. At the moment they only track iOS apps, but they promise to be expanding to other platforms soon. I’m looking forward to that, but for now I’ll be digging into some data to see if we can build a better mousetrap. I mean better exercise tracking app.