The Era of AppNation Has Arrived

Judging by two of the most hyped deals in recent Silicon Valley history — Facebook’s acquisition of Instagram for $1 billion and Zynga’s acquisition of Draw Something for $200 million — it seems like a foregone conclusion that the era of the app has arrived.

And some new numbers from Nielsen that chronicle the rise of “AppNation” on Android and iOS between March 2011 and March 2012 back up that notion. The study shows the average number of apps per smartphone has jumped from 32 apps to 41, and growth in time spent on app usage outpacing the growth in mobile Web usage on smartphones by a hefty margin.

And while Nielsen’s measure of the top five apps — Facebook, YouTube, Android Market, Google Search and Gmail — remained constant, the rest of the top 50 was more of an open playing field, with more than 20 percent of the remaining spots entering as new players, and plenty of maneuvering going on.

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