Contrary to conventional wisdom, smartphone and tablet photo app users are a significant opportunity for photo output product vendors

Data from a new study by Suite 48 Analytics shows the new generation of mobile photographers will buy photo products if given innovative apps and workflows

GOLDEN, Colo., Nov. 14, 2012 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- Photo app users are a largely untapped opportunity for the photo output industry, according to the new study, Photo Product Purchasing Survey among Mobile Photo App Users, which Suite 48 Analytics conducted among 982 North American and 515 European photo app users.


The study found that 42% of the North American photo app users are younger than 25 and 55% have never ordered any type of photo output products – let alone products that include any of their smartphone photos.

"The biggest bottleneck for this new generation of photo app users is not the quality of smartphone photos, as is often assumed," says Hans Hartman Principal Analyst at Suite 48 Analytics and lead author of the report. "Only 13% of the photo app users stated that the quality of photos from their smartphone has held them back from ordering photo products. It turns out the bigger problem is a lack of innovative photo product creation and ordering apps, coupled with cumbersome creation and ordering workflows."

Only 5% of the circa 500 top ranking photo apps in the Apple and Google app stores offer any photo product creation or ordering functionality, as reported in The Photo & Video App Market Analysis October Report, a recent study of the photo apps market by Suite 48 Analytics. Accordingly, it's no surprise that the Photo Product Purchasing Survey among Mobile Photo App Users found that only 9% of smartphone users who order photo output products do this directly from their smartphone, and the corresponding figure for tablet users is just 25%.

According to Hartman, the lack of output product ordering capabilities in the apps is forcing smartphone and tablet users to revert to more complicated and burdensome workflows that involve uploading or transferring mobile device photos to larger screen devices, such as computers or kiosks.

Based on information supplied by survey respondents, Hartman recommends a dual approach to accessing this untapped opportunity:

  • In order to be successful with the "here and now generation" of photo app users, the industry needs easy apps that enable photo app users to immediately place orders for the simpler photo products (photo printings, greeting cards, mugs, T-shirts, etc.). These could be dedicated photo output product apps or product ordering features added to the more popular photo enhancement or sharing apps.
  • Both this new generation and the older generation that is more familiar with ordering photo output products on their computer or kiosk, could benefit from easier and more ubiquitous workflows to have their photos at their fingertips at any time, on any device – without needing to plug in cables or USB sticks, or to manually upload photo files. These workflow improvements could be of particular value for the more complex photo products, such as multi-page photo books, which are harder to create on smaller screens.

Finally, the study also measured the potential for innovative photo apps that leverage the unique capabilities of smartphones as a photo taking platform. 34% of the photo app users who have never ordered photo output products containing smartphone photos declared themselves likely or very likely to order photo output products if given an app that automatically requested photos from friends who took photos at the same time and place. The study highlighted these findings as an example of how innovative photo apps could spur demand for photo output products.

The 96-page Photo Product Purchasing Survey among Mobile Photo App Users study address the following high-level topics:

  • Who were surveyed?
  • Which mobile devices and operating systems do they use for taking photos?
  • What apps do they use and why?
  • Have they ever ordered photo output products?  How?
  • Have they ever ordered photo output products that contain smartphone photos?
  • How do they order photo output products that contain smartphone photos?
  • What do they do with their photo output products that contain smartphone photos?
  • Why do they select particular photo output product ordering methods?
  • How satisfied are they with the photo output product ordering methods they use?
  • Would they consider ordering more photo output products with the right innovative app?
  • What would need to change before they'd order photo output products directly from their smartphones?
  • If they haven't yet ordered any photo output products with smartphone photos, why not?
  • What could make them sway towards ordering photo output products with smartphone photos?
  • Appendix A: How are each of these questions answered differently by different demographics? (by gender, age, household type)
  • Appendix B: How are each of these questions answered differently by geography? (North Americans vs. Europeans)

The report includes 82 graphs and 13 tables.

Sponsors of the study include Ecce Terram

For more information:

About Suite 48 Analytics

Suite 48 Analytics, the leading research and analysis firm for the mobile photography market, conducts app market analysis and research among smartphone and tablet users.

Reports include "The 6Sight Social Imaging Survey," published by 6Sight/PMA, and "The Photo & Video App Market Analysis October Report," and the "Photo Product Ordering in Photo Apps" free white paper. For more information:

Media Contact:

Hans Hartman Suite 48 Analytics, 3039453836,

News distributed by PR Newswire iReach:

SOURCE Suite 48 Analytics



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