Looks like people are not just spending all their time on TikTok after all. Many are actually dedicating their time to education apps, so they can learn a new skill during quarantine. I previously wrote about the rise of early education apps. Today, I’ll cover education apps geared towards adults, highlighting general trends and the apps that received the most attention March through May. 

Who’s using EDU apps? 

For a more accurate analysis, I split education apps into five different markets: adult education (genEd), coding, language, language tutoring, and music learning. Popularity of each category/market varied by country. Below I’ve listed the apps I examined from each and which countries those apps are most popular in.

- Adult Education: Skillshare, Coursera, edXLinkedIn Learning, The Great Courses Plus, Masterclass (India, U.S., U.K., and Brazil)
- Coding: Mimo, SoloLearn, Codeacademy Go, Programming Hub (India, U.S.)
- Language: Duolingo, Memrise, Babbel, Busuu, Cake (U.S., Brazil)
- Language tutoring: Italki, Preply, Verbling (U.S., Brazil, U.K.)
- Music learning: Yousician, Flowkey, Simply Piano by JoyTunes (U.S., China)

As for user demographics, our U.S. data shows millennials as the primary users of both the interest-based learning apps and the genEd apps.

Adult Learning Apps

These apps serve as platforms where users can search for and access different courses. We saw notable increases in both downloads and daily active users (DAU) for adult learning apps in April. edX and Masterclass saw the highest increases in April. Below I've listed how much each app grew from March to April and from April to May. 

Adult EDU dls

April MoM

- Coursera:  downloads +57%, DAU +68%
- edX:  downloads +233%, DAU +154%
- LinkedIn Learning: downloads +77%, DAU +35%
- Masterclass:  downloads +114%, DAU +74%
- Skillshare: downloads +28%, DAU +17%
- The Great Courses Plus: downloads +26%, DAU +27%

May MoM

- Coursera: downloads +6%, DAU +21%
- edX: downloads -28%, DAU +45%
- LinkedIn Learning: downloads +54%, DAU +46%
- Masterclass: downloads +7%, DAU +34%
- Skillshare: downloads +41%, DAU +23%
- The Great Courses Plus:  downloads +46%, DAU +22%

Coding Apps

We noticed significant increases in coding app downloads during the month of May. However, those downloads didn’t appear to convert to daily active users for Mimo, SoloLearn, Codeacademy Go, or Grasshopper. Programming Hub was the only exception - their downloads spiked 1,017% and DAU spiked 804% in May. It’s possible that coding app users are generally defaulting to their desktops to code as opposed to using mobile apps. 

downloads and DAU of programming hub

Language Apps

In April, we saw increases in MoM downloads for Memrise (+31%), Babbel (+38%), Cake (+17%) and Duolingo (+5%). Duolingo, one of the most well known language-learning apps in the space already has a large user base, which explains why we haven't seen dramatic increases in its downloads or DAU as of late. 

Busuu’s downloads decreased 37% in April and DAU dropped 14%. From April to May, however, we see Busuu increasing downloads 29% and DAU declining 3%.

DAU Langauge apps

Language Tutoring Platform 

Language tutoring apps are not directly competing with language apps. These apps offer a platform to find and connect with real tutors.  In April, downloads and DAU declined for Verbling, but all three apps in our market saw significant growth in downloads and DAU during the month of May. 

April MoM

Italki: downloads +31%, DAU +36%
Preply: downloads +32%, DAU +35%
Verbling: downloads -2%, DAU -12%

May MoM

Italki: downloads +96%, DAU +70%
Preply: downloads +95%, DAU +53%
Verbling: downloads +150%, DAU +60%

Music Learning Apps

Music learning apps grew downloads and engagement in April. This time, the engagement metric we’re looking at is sessions. An app session occurs every time someone opens an app. 

April MoM

Yousician: sessions +41%
Flowkey: sessions +26%
Simply Piano by JoyTunes: sessions +12%

May MoM

Yousician: sessions +11%
Flowkey: sessions +5%
Simply Piano by JoyTunes: sessions +2%

Key Takeaways 

Apptopia data shows education apps gaining in popularity since March. The coronavirus has clearly impacted the education landscape by all measures, with mobile edtech emerging stronger than ever. As more countries open up, I wonder if education apps will continue to see high levels of downloads and engagement?

Email me with your thoughts and questions at cecilia@apptopia.com or click that big blue button below.  

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AuthorCecilia Hermawan

App Intelligence Specialist