Six Month Check In: The 2020 App Space

June 30, 2020
We are officially halfway through 2020, and the mobile app industry has already taken this year by storm.

A recent study reveals that 66% of Americans check their phone 160 times daily, and once they’re on their phones, 90% of that mobile time is spent on a selection of the millions of apps available through Apple and Android app stores. As people continue to work from home across the nation, those daily phone checks (and subsequent screen time) have only increased. Leading mobile market data provider App Annie’s latest report reflects this – noting a 20% year-over-year increase in daily time spent in apps on Android devices in Q1 2020. The report also notes that consumer spending in both iOS and Androids app both grew, setting a new record for in-app spending for a single quarter at $23.4 billion worldwide.

So, who is dominating the space and those numbers? Unsurprisingly, the top five worldwide apps include household names like TikTok, WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram and Facebook Messenger. Tinder, YouTube, Netflix, iQIYI and Tencent Video lead the charge with app spend. Apps like Spotify, Snapchat and Pandora all rank high too.

New to the rankings this year? Video-based apps. Previously underutilized and overlooked, video-centric apps like Zoom and Houseparty have steadily climbed the ranks during 2020’s first six months as consumers seek tangible human connection from the safety of their homes during quarantine. The focus on video connection tools isn’t limited to new apps, though. Apps like Facebook and Instagram have spent significant time during 2020 implementing various upgraded video features.

And, that’s where we fit in to 2020’s app space. At its core, GiftCast is based on utilizing video as a way to foster meaningful human connection. We offer a unique solution to celebrating both big and small moments regardless of circumstances, to creating memories that last a lifetime and to improving the gifting experience all around. It all starts with a video on a mobile device that can make lives better.

The numbers continue to paint the picture we are familiar with - there’s a significant opportunity to connect with mobile users right now. There are few advertisers in the market, phones have longer battery life and people are increasingly spending more time in apps and online.

As the app space continues to accelerate this year, we, like many app creators, are focused on seizing this new direction, on evolving to offer users special and useful functions and features and on continuing to leverage features like video to serve mobile users with authentic connections and meaningful memories.
About GiftCast Admin
Joel Deitz is co-founder and Chief Creative Officer of GiftCast. He posses’ deep and unflinching beliefs that design makes our world a better place. He also believes that to be happy, people need to feel important. For Joel, creating and improving GiftCast has been a great joy but using it to celebrate loved ones is even greater.
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Graduations Go Virtual: How to Celebrate

June 2, 2020
Graduating from high school, trade school, college or graduate school is undoubtedly one of life’s biggest milestones.

This year though, this momentous achievement might not look exactly how you pictured it during the pre-COVID era. Rather than walking across the stage in a cap and gown and celebrating with pictures and toasts with friends and family, graduation has gone virtual in light of social distancing. This year, graduates are cheering from the safety of their own home when their name is read aloud on Zoom, watching commencement speakers on Instagram Live or YouTube, ordering in drinks via apps like Drizly and hosting virtual graduation brunches and dinners with family via FaceTime, Skype or Google Hangout. Technology is ensuring that we keep the tradition of graduation alive and well this year, regardless of how it looks.

New technology is also helping us continue to recognize and celebrate new graduates’ years of hard work, studying, tests and essays, with creative ways to connect, gift and honor our loved ones’ efforts in the classroom. Whether we are in the same place or not, we’ve been letting graduates in our family and friend circles know how proud we are of them with personalized videos and cash gifts on GiftCast. Recipients can keep these video messages saved on their phone or in the app to look back on for years to come. Plus, we want to give graduates the option to spend their money where they prefer as they move into this next chapter.

Graduations may look different this year, but we’re thankful for technology that lets us virtually celebrate despite the circumstances.

Congrats 2020 graduates! You did it!
About GiftCast Admin
Joel Deitz is co-founder and Chief Creative Officer of GiftCast. He posses’ deep and unflinching beliefs that design makes our world a better place. He also believes that to be happy, people need to feel important. For Joel, creating and improving GiftCast has been a great joy but using it to celebrate loved ones is even greater.
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Earth Day’s 50th Anniversary: The Green Way to Give Gifts

April 20, 2020
With Earth Day’s 50th anniversary approaching, we are inspired to reflect on our efforts to help the planet. Whether its reusable shopping bags or eliminating plastic bottles, there are a variety of ways we can do our part to reduce our impact on the environment.

According to Gift Rocket, more than 1.6 billion gift cards are printed each year and over 9,000 tons of plastic are used to make them. In the United States alone, more than 30 million tons of plastic are discarded each year, with only 8% being recycled. Gift cards are a popular choice for birthdays and holidays, but their short lifespan only contributes to this increasing waste.

GiftCast tackles this problem head-on – offering a gift that is both eco-friendly and sentimental. It creates lasting memories without producing the waste of a traditional gift card, which helps the planet as it simultaneously helps those who struggle shopping for others. Not only does the app reduce plastic waste, it eliminates waste from greeting cards and wrapping paper too.

Video gifting also reduces waste from unspent gift cards. According to CNBC, up to $3 billion worth of unused gift cards are wasted each year. With GiftCast, users can send any amount of money to a loved one and give them the choice of how to spend it – instead of leaving money hanging on a gift card the recipient may never use.

As the environment changes, so will we, and we look forward to being at the forefront of the digital gifting movement. Going virtual doesn’t have to mean impersonal, and we pride ourselves on our ability to provide others with a personalized way to reach family and friends while reducing single-use plastics.

How are you reducing single use plastics in your own life? Head to our social channels and let us know!
About GiftCast Admin
Joel Deitz is co-founder and Chief Creative Officer of GiftCast. He posses’ deep and unflinching beliefs that design makes our world a better place. He also believes that to be happy, people need to feel important. For Joel, creating and improving GiftCast has been a great joy but using it to celebrate loved ones is even greater.
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