There have been many large-scale investigations of users' mobile app launch behaviour, but all have been conducted on Android, even though recent reports suggest iPhones account for a third of all smartphones in use. We report on the first large-scale analysis of app usage patterns on iPhones. We conduct a reproduction study with a cohort of over 10,000 jailbroken iPhone users, reproducing several studies previously conducted on Android devices. We find some differences, but also significant similarities: e.g. communications apps are the most used on both platforms; similar patterns are apparent of few apps being very popular but there existing a 'long tail' of many apps used by the population; users show similar patterns of 'micro-usage'; almost identical proportions of people use a unique combination of apps. Such similarities add confidence but also specificity about claims of consistency across smartphones. As well as presenting our findings, we discuss issues involved in reproducing studies across platforms.
A. Morrison, Xiaoyu Xiong, M. Higgs
Proceedings of the 2018 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems