Real life ruled the first half of 2016 but virtual reality will rule the second half.
With the first half of 2016 under our belts, we can already see some major differences in the startup market from last year. For one, the frivolous apps boom has fizzled out and been replaced by a new trend: the rise of utility apps.
According to a study conducted by Venngage that used Product Hunt’s API to look at products and product tags over the last six months, people are more interested in apps that will make their lives better, easier and more productive. Of the sample collected, life products, particularly travel products, came out on top, similar to their popularity in 2015.
Some product tags, however, did see a big increase from last year. People are also looking for more ways to get the most out of their days. Products that promote productivity earned 10% more upvotes on Product Hunt than the average. This is in line with a study by Flurry Analytics which found that mobile use of productivity apps increased by 125% between 2014 and 2015.
Bots and Artificial Intelligence products are also gaining popularity, particularly following the announcement of Facebook chatbots. Bots were the 20th most mentioned products on Product Hunt, and AI products were the 15th most mentioned.
On-demand products saw a decrease in popularity from 2015. In the first half of 2016, they received 70% less upvotes than the average.
The study notes that the data was collected before the release of Pokémon Go, which will undoubtedly boost the popularity of Virtual Reality products (while Pokémon Go technically qualifies as Augmented Reality, it still plays into the growing popularity of VR products). As it stands, before the release of Pokémon Go, VR products were already on the rise–the number of mentions for VR products tripled in the last three months alone.
These rapidly shifting numbers are a testament to how quickly startup trends can change. In the case of a product like Pokémon Go being released, these changes can literally happen overnight.
This infographic shows the most popular products for 2016 so far.