With the current crisis, mobile phone usage trends are on the rise, including payments, delivery, video calls, and even Wi-Fi calling.
Mobile payments is seeing growth in the feature's adoption among smartphone users. Payment processor company Marqeta says it's seeing a tenfold increase in its service since the pandemic outbreak.
Mobile payments allow smartphone users to make purchases online. For years, consumers have been able to visit websites on smartphones and make payments. In the new era, however, mobile payments are allowing companies such as Samsung (Samsung Pay), Google (Google Pay), and other vendors to make payments through their platforms. In some cases, OEMs are offering rewards points, bonuses, and cash back to tempt phone users onto their payments platforms.
Mobile payments are seeing increasing demand when it comes to paying without cash, credit card, or debit card. Customers can visit the grocery store without touching a physical, plastic card. And with the need to practice good hygiene and make contact-less payments, mobile payment platforms fill a void they haven't supplied for many, until now.
Growing Usage Phone Trends in purchases: Online Delivery
Online delivery, another of the top phone usage trends, looks here to stay in light of prohibitions against traveling and leaving home. It allows users to order food that comes to their doorstep. This prevents users from leaving home unless absolutely necessary. In light of federal news reports on rising virus peak periods, it's wise to only leave home for groceries if there's an emergency need.
Of course, online delivery is a growing trend in major cities. Major cities have multiple restaurants that specialize in delivery. In contrast, citizens in rural areas must still travel out to the local grocery store because there are few (if none at all) restaurants that deliver 15 minutes from the closest city, for example.
Marqeta founder Jason Gardner says that his mobile payment company has seen a 30% demand increase for online delivery in the first week of the federal stay-at-home order. The following week, online delivery demand for his platform jumped to 82%.
Growing phone usage trends in video chat: Video Calling
Video calling is another growing trend in light of social isolation. As of March 23rd, Facebook reported a 70% increase in video calling on its social media site. Since March, group video chat Houseparty is seeing a 79% increase in usage and app downloads for the service are growing 735 times more than normal.
Video calling is growing in demand because of employees working from home. With few other sources of communication outside of smartphones and landline phones, citizens are relying on face-to-face chats by way of video calling.
Video games are another growing trend for global citizens. Citizens who log off from video calling find themselves bored with little to do. With containment at home, and boredom a daily occurrence, citizens are alleviating their situation through video games.
US carriers Verizon and T-Mobile are reporting 75% and 45% increases in video game play since March, respectively. Health experts are encouraging video games as a way to not only relieve stress but to find some source of enjoyment and happiness during what is a stressful and difficult time.
FierceWireless says that these growing trends are a direct result of the current global pandemic. Global citizens find themselves at home to avoid contracting the disease. Stay-at-home orders and curfews are in place in some counties and states in the US. With citizens practicing social distancing, a concept that consists of avoiding facial encounters with others who could be potential carriers, citizens are turning to their smartphones for rescue.
Smartphones, once a luxury, are becoming the lifeblood of humanity.