Since smartphone and tablet technology is an integral component of the lives of people in Ireland and New Year’s resolutions might still be in the back of some people minds, it seems like more people are using apps to improve their health and fitness behaviours. iReach Insights conducted nationally representative survey and 1,000 adults were asked about their opinion about apps in general, their usage of health and fitness apps and fitness devices.
Almost everyone has a smartphone and/or a tablet and 92% are using apps on their smart devices. Unfortunately, 30% of those using apps, have serious concerns about using apps. The TOP 5 concerns adults in Ireland have about apps are:
1. Access to personal data
2. Privacy breach
3. Tracking abilities
5. Storage loss on phone / tablet
The majority of app users (81%) are using free of charge apps and only 19% pay for using the apps each month. Of those (19%) they pay an average of €5.85 a month.
35% of app users in Ireland use apps concerning their health, body, fitness and/or diet. More women (40%) than men (30%) use these health/fitness apps. Here are the TOP 5 health and fitness apps used:
1. Fitness tracker / Steps counter
2. Diet / Calorie counter
3. Workout /fitness program
4. Healthy food
5. Sleep monitoring
The biggest gap between male and female health app usage can be found on competitive fitness apps. 18% of men, but only 6% of women use them. All in all, two-thirds (68%) believe health / fitness apps improve their behaviour.
One out of five people living in Ireland (21%) uses a fitness device and over the half of them (53%) use Fitbit. In terms of the device used, 48% have a watch, 46% a wristband and / or 4% a chip as a fitness device. Also, the majority (57%) think that fitness devices have some kind of positive effect on their health and fitness habits. Furthermore, three out of four (74%) would recommend their fitness device.
On the topic of health apps and fitness devices, people living in Ireland were asked, if they think that the Government and insurance companies should have access to (anonymous) data from any kind of health or fitness apps. Inconsistent with the TOP 1 concern about apps, which is access to personal data, 37% think, that the Government and insurance companies should have access to the data to improve the Irish health system and to create specific health programs.
In light of the health topic and the possibility of the incoming sugar tax, 44% of people in Ireland think that the sugar tax won’t help lower the obesity rate of children, but 74% agree that banning energy drinks for those under the age of 16 is a good idea.
These results show that health & fitness apps and devices seem to offer an actual support in changing and improving habits in people’s daily lives.