Can mobile apps lead to healthier behavior?


Over the past decade, the popularity of mobile apps has skyrocketed. Today, consumers spend about five hours a day on mobile devices, and over 90 percent of that time is spent on apps. We use apps to play games, shop, browse the web, navigate our trips and manage finances.

Vitality recognizes this acceleration of people using apps as their first stop for many daily needs. As such, we’ve made an effort to be mobile-first, allowing members to participate in healthy lifestyle activities through the device that is always with them. But many employer groups who are looking to implement a health and wellness program for their employees have asked us if our mobile app was only successful among Millennials and those who are generally healthier working professionals from predominately “white-collar” organizations? They’ve also wondered if our mobile app users really had high levels of participation in the mobile tools featured on the app and whether it helped members more easily engage in health activities.

We set out to answer some of these questions through our recent analysis of members who were registered on the Vitality website for at least a year who then downloaded our mobile app. We learned that our mobile app had broad appeal – it was used by members of all health risk types, across all generations and among all industries.

We followed our app users’ level of engagement and identified that it became simple and easy for members to use the mobile app as they returned twice as often as website users. Through our GPS tracking capability, 38% of our app users were able to record their workouts automatically upon checking into their gyms. And ultimately, we discovered that over time after the mobile app download, 100% of those who previously were lower-engaged members became higher-engaged members based on the number of health activities.

Employer groups can see more details here on how our mobile app is a compelling and engaging tool to promote to their employees. It is another Vitality tool that can help employees make strides toward reaching their healthier behavior goals.

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