Will Google PWAs Stop Facebook from Swallowing the Internet?

Google progressive web apps promise to improve user experience to rival native apps and bring consumers back to the web, possibly stopping Facebook’s plans…

As reported, consumer app fatigue is a foreboding reality, proving a big challenge to businesses. Even if you’ve not heard about the app fatigue phenomenon, you’ve probably experienced it firsthand. Visit the app drawer on your phone or tablet and you’ll know precisely what it is: an overwhelming number of choices with just a few used daily.

Google PWAs Appear to Thwart Facebook’s Plans to Monopolize Consumer Digital Time

Did you know the average smartphone owner spends 2 hours and 42 minutes each day on their device. Of that, users spend 2 hours and 19 minutes (or 70 to 80 percent) in just three apps. Of all smartphone owners, 89 percent spend digital time on apps, compared to just 11 percent on the mobile web. If you develop an app, be prepared to face grim prospects. Even with effective apps promotion tactics, it’s difficult to stand out.

Facebook never wants you to leave, so it’s swallowing up where you might try to go. A few years back, its News Feed brimmed with links to content hosted elsewhere. News articles, YouTube clips, business websites, ads for e-commerce stores. But Facebook has decided the world outside its walled garden is full of friction. And friction isn’t The Hacker Way. In the wild, you’re forced to endure load times, extra clicks, and heaven forbid, typing. Each link out is an opportunity to disconnect, thwarting Facebook’s mission as well as its business model. — TechCrunch (Source)

Fewer the .01 percent of all mobile apps will return a positive ROI, being financially successful by 2018. Approximately 52 percent of all mobile apps lose at least half their peak users after just three months. And, a full 74 percent of all consumers report wanting to uninstall used apps. Only 1 in 10,000 apps developed break-even or are profitable.

Facebook actually benefits from these statistics, being the go-to app. It’s where 68 percent of millennials get their news. It also leads in check ins per day, with 70 percent of users engaging one or more times each day. Facebook continues to add more features to keep consumers on its platform and away from the mobile web.

But Google has other plans, backing a progressive web apps initiative. And, it’s doing so to willing smartphone participants. “Mobile web audiences are almost 3x the size and growing 2x as fast as app audiences,” a 2016 comScore report notes:

comScore mobile web
Credit: comScore

Progressive web apps, or PWAs, offer the best of native apps and the mobile web in one interface. Unlike native apps, these aren’t downloaded to mobile devices, saving precious space. Their also required to be encrypted, something missing in many native apps. They likewise provide offline usage and become more personalized with each interaction.

If successful, Google will back a force that places mobile web usage over native apps through PWAs.

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Owen E. Richason IV

Owen is blog content writer, SEO consultant, social media marketer, and website guy. His work has appeared in the Houston Chronicle, on Business.com, Tampa Bay Business and Financier, AOL and numerous other blogs and websites. is also a musician and is the founder of Groove Modes.