3 in 10 People Worldwide Use Their Smartphone for Wellness Activities

November 10, 2022

Health and wellness tech has experienced growing interest in the US, and there’s a strong market globally also, according to research from Kantar. Some 3 in 10 people use their smartphone for exercise, meditation or other wellness activities, according to Kantar’s report.

Based on responses from 10,000 online respondents from the Kantar Profiles Audience Network across ten global markets, the report shows that the use of smartphones for health and wellness activities is higher among females (34%) than males (27%). Millennials (ages 25-39; 41%) lead the way when sorting by generation, followed by Gen Z (ages 18-24; 36%), Gen X (ages 40-55; 29%) and Boomers (ages 56-75; 18%).

Of the 10 markets tracked, respondents in India are easily the most apt to be using health and wellness tech, with 54% claiming to do so. That compares to 26% in the US.

Along with changing diet habits, exercise is a key element of health and wellness goals, and this is the top activity that people monitor using technology. Some 51% of those who monitor their health and/or exercise report doing so, ahead of the 45% who monitor their step counts / flights climbed and the 44% who monitor their weight / nutrition.

Among those who say they’re actively monitoring their health and/or their exercise, a majority (57%) are using only their smartphone to monitor their health, while about 3 in 10 (29%) use a smartwatch. However, those who wear smartwatches are actively monitoring all health activities at a greater rate than those using smartphones or other wearable technology.

Health & Wellness Apps

Two-thirds of respondents wish there were more free fitness, health and wellness apps available to them, per the report. The social and community components of these apps have appeal, with 63% of those who monitor their health crediting those features with an increased ease of practicing healthy habits.

Slightly more than half (52%) would pay for fitness, health or wellness apps, with this figure highest among Gen Z adults (65%) and Millennials (66%) and much lower among Boomers (34%). There’s also substantial variation in the willingness to do so by country: a high of 69% in France would not be willing to pay for such an app, while just 17% in India wouldn’t. Within the US 63% said they would not be willing to pay for these apps.

Among those who pay for health-related apps, the majority (57%) have paid-for subscriptions to fitness and exercise apps, and one-third with a paid fitness subscription say they can’t live without one. Americans appear to be particularly keen on these, with half of those who hold a paid fitness subscription saying they can’t live without one. That was the highest share of any of the 10 countries.

For more, check out the report here.

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