Visualizing the Growth of Home Fitness Apps in 2020
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The Growth of Home Fitness Apps

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The growth in home fitness apps

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The Growth of Home Fitness Apps

Home fitness apps have been shaping our lives—and our glutes—long before COVID-19, but their popularity has truly surged in the last few months.

Which regions are driving this growth? And is home fitness here to stay, or will it fade away when the pandemic is over?

This graphic uses data from MoEngage and Apptopia to highlight the growth in home fitness apps across five different regions, representing 1.5 billion mobile app users. Note that the report uses data from Google’s Play Store and Apple’s App Store, so China was not included.

Growth, by Number of Downloads

Between Q1 and Q2 2020, health and fitness app downloads grew by 46% worldwide. Here’s a look at the regional breakdown:

RegionDownload Growth
India157%
MENA55%
Europe25%
Asia-Pacific47%
Rest of the World43%
Americas21%

India saw the highest increase in downloads, rising by 156%. That translates to 58 million new active users—almost the entire population of Italy.

This makes sense considering that India had the largest lockdown in the world—from March 25 to May 2020, 1.3 billion people were instructed to stay inside. That’s a lot of people who, quite suddenly, found themselves homebound.

The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region saw the second highest growth in downloads, at a 55% increase, followed by Asia-Pacific with a 47% increase.

Growth, by Daily Active Users

Along with a surge in downloads, fitness apps also saw a rise in daily active users (DAUs). This is significant because it shows people weren’t just downloading these apps and forgetting about them—they were actually using them.

Globally, DAUs for fitness apps increased by 24% from Q1 to Q2. Here’s a look at the growth in each region:

RegionDAU Growth
India84%
MENA28%
Europe11%
Asia-Pacific24%
Rest of the World24%
Americas8%

As with downloads, India saw the largest increase in DAUs with an 84% increase, or 12 million new users. MENA saw the second-highest growth (which also aligns with downloads) at 28%.

In contrast, the Americas saw the smallest increase at just 8%—but this also may be a function of having more users to start with. Despite the lower growth rate than other regions, those who did adopt fitness apps in the Americas seemed to enjoy them, particularly in the United States.

According to a mid-year survey by OnePoll, 74% of Americans used at least one fitness app during quarantine, and 60% enjoyed their home workouts so much, they now plan on canceling their gym membership for good.

Top Grossing Health & Fitness Apps in Q2 2020

Which companies have been capitalizing on this trend? Here’s a look at the top-grossing health and fitness apps in Q2 2020, using data from Sensor Tower:

April was focused on mindfulness and meditation more than active workouts. Calm, an app for sleep, meditation, and relaxation, was the highest-grossing app at $8.5 million. Another popular mindfulness app came in second place—Headspace grossed $5.5 million. MyFitnessPal, used for tracking your diet and exercise, ranked third.

In May, meditation remained a primary focus. Calm grossed $7.7 million and kept its top spot as the highest-grossing health and fitness app, while MyFitnessPal ranked second with more than $6.5 million in gross revenue. Strava, an app with built-in GPS that tracks your workouts, came in at third place.

By June, people had shifted their focus to diet tracking and active workouts. MyFitnessPal took first place, grossing $6.7 million. Calm and Headspace came second and third, respectively.

Is Home Fitness Here to Stay?

During lockdown, gyms and fitness studios were left with no other choice than to increase their digital presence. Many started offering virtual classes, allowing members to access services from the comfort of their own homes.

Lockdown also inspired people to improve their home gyms and invest in home fitness equipment. Exercise equipment company Peloton has surged in popularity this year—it’s set to double its sales in 2020, with an estimated $1.8 billion in revenue by the end of the year.

With gyms online and fancy new equipment at home, will people maintain their lockdown workout routines even after the pandemic ends?

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Misc

Iconic Infographic Map Compares the World’s Mountains and Rivers

This iconic infographic map is an early and ambitious attempt to compare the world’s tallest mountains and longest rivers.

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Today, highly detailed maps of our planet’s surface are just a click away.

In times past, however, access to information was much more limited. It wasn’t until the 1800s that comparison diagrams and maps became widely accessible, and people found new ways to learn about the world around them.

The image above, published by J.H. Colton in 1849, is believed to be the first edition of the iconic mountains and rivers infographic map. This comparison chart concept would see a number of iterations over the years as it appeared in Colton’s world atlases.

Inspiring a Classic Infographic Map

A seminal example of this style of infographic was produced by Alexander von Humboldt in 1805. The diagram below is packed with information and shows geographical features in a way that was extremely novel at the time.

Alexander von Humboldt mountain diagram

In 1817, the brothers William and Daniel Lizars produced the first comparative chart of the world’s mountains and rivers. Breaking up individual natural features into components for comparison was a very innovative approach at that time, and it was this early French language prototype that lead to the Colton’s versions we’re familiar with today.

Digging into the Details

As is obvious, even at first glance, there is a ton of detail packed into this infographic map.

Firstly, rivers are artificially straightened and neatly arranged in rows for easy comparison. Lakes, mountain ranges, and cities are all labeled along the way. This unique comparison brings cities like New Orleans and Cairo side by side.

detailed view of longest rivers visualization

Of course, this visualization was based on the best available data at the time. Today, the Nile is widely considered to be the world’s longest river, followed by the Amazon and Yangtze.

Over on the mountain side, there are more details to take in. The visualization includes volcanic activity, notes on vegetation, and even the altitude of selected cities and towns.

detailed view of tallest mountains visualization

Above are a few of South America’s high-altitude population centers, including La Paz, which is the highest-elevation capital city in the world.

In the legend, many of the mountains are simply named “peak”. While this generic labeling might seem like a throwback to a time when the world was still being explored, it’s worth noting that today’s second tallest mountain is still simply referred to as K2.

What details do you notice while exploring this iconic infographic map?

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Demographics

Mapped: A Decade of Population Growth and Decline in U.S. Counties

This map shows which counties in the U.S. have seen the most growth, and which places have seen their populations dwindle in the last 10 years.

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A Decade of Population Growth and Decline in U.S. Counties

There are a number of factors that determine how much a region’s population changes.

If an area sees a high number of migrants, along with a strong birth rate and low death rate, then its population is bound to increase over time. On the flip side, if more people are leaving the area than coming in, and the region’s birth rate is low, then its population will likely decline.

Which areas in the United States are seeing the most growth, and which places are seeing their populations dwindle?

This map, using data from the U.S. Census Bureau, shows a decade of population movement across U.S. counties, painting a detailed picture of U.S. population growth between 2010 and 2020.

Counties With The Biggest Population Growth from 2010-2020

To calculate population estimates for each county, the U.S. Census Bureau does the following calculations:

A county’s base population → plus births → minus deaths → plus migration = new population estimate

 
From 2010 to 2020, Maricopa County in Arizona saw the highest increase in its population estimate. Over a decade, the county gained 753,898 residents. Below are the counties that saw the biggest increases in population:

RankCountyPoint of ReferenceStatePop. Growth (2010–2020)
#1Maricopa CountyPhoenix, ScottsdaleArizona+753,898
#2Harris CountyHoustonTexas+630,711
#3Clark CountyLas VegasNevada+363,323
#4King CountySeattleWashington+335,884
#5Tarrant CountyFort Worth, ArlingtonTexas+305,180
#6Bexar CountySan AntonioTexas+303,982
#7Riverside CountyRiverside, Palm SpringsCalifornia+287,626
#8Collin CountyPlanoTexas+284,967
#9Travis CountyAustinTexas+270,111
#10Hillsborough CountyTampaFlorida+264,446

Phoenix and surrounding areas grew faster than any other major city in the country. The region’s sunny climate and amenities are popular with retirees, but another draw is housing affordability. Families from more expensive markets—California in particular—are moving to the city in droves. This is a trend that spilled over into the pandemic era as more people moved into remote and hybrid work situations.

Texas counties saw a lot of growth as well, with five of the top 10 gainers located in the state of Texas. A big draw for Texas is its relatively affordable housing market. In 2021, average home prices in the state stood at $172,500$53,310 below the national average.

Counties With The Biggest Population Drops from 2010-2020

On the opposite end of the spectrum, here’s a look at the top 10 counties that saw the biggest declines in their populations over the decade:

RankCountyPoint of ReferenceStatePop. Growth (2010–2020)
#1Cook CountyChicagoIllinois-90,693
#2Wayne CountyDetroitMichigan-74,224
#3Cuyahoga CountyClevelandOhio-50,220
#4Genesee CountyFlintMichigan-20,165
#5Suffolk CountyLong IslandNew York-20,064
#6Caddo ParishShreveportLouisiana-18,173
#7Westmoreland CountyMurrysvillePennsylvania-17,942
#8Hinds CountyJacksonMississippi-17,751
#9Kanawha CountyCharlestonWest Virginia-16,672
#10Cambria CountyJohnstownPennsylvania-14,786

The largest drops happened in counties along the Great Lakes, including Cook County (which includes the city of Chicago) and Wayne County (which includes the city of Detroit).

For many of these counties, particularly those in America’s “Rust Belt”, population drops over this period were a continuation of decades-long trends. Wayne County is an extreme example of this trend. From 1970 to 2020, the area lost one-third of its population.

U.S. Population Growth in Percentage Terms (2010-2020)

While the map above is great at showing where the greatest number of Americans migrated, it downplays big changes in counties with smaller populations.

For example, McKenzie County in North Dakota, with a 2020 population of just 15,242, was the fastest-growing U.S. county over the past decade. The county’s 138% increase was driven primarily by the Bakken oil boom in the area. High-growth counties in Texas also grew as new sources of energy were extracted in rural areas.

The nation’s counties are evenly divided between population increase and decline, and clear patterns emerge.

population changes in u.s. counties (%)

Pandemic Population Changes

More recent population changes reflect longer-term trends. During the COVID-19 pandemic, many of the counties that saw the strongest population increases were located in high-growth states like Florida and Texas.

Below are the 20 counties that grew the most from 2020 to 2021.

RankCountyPoint of ReferenceStatePop. Growth (2020–2021)
#1Maricopa CountyPhoenixArizona+58,246
#2Collin CountyPlanoTexas+36,313
#3Riverside CountyRiverside, Palm SpringsCalifornia+35,631
#4Fort Bend CountySugar LandTexas+29,895
#5Williamson CountyGeorgetownTexas+27,760
#6Denton CountyDentonTexas+27,747
#7Polk CountyLakelandFlorida+24,287
#8Montgomery CountyThe WoodlandsTexas+23,948
#9Lee CountyFort MyersFlorida+23,297
#10Utah CountyProvoUtah+21,843
#11Pinal CountySan Tan ValleyArizona+19,974
#12Clark CountyLas VegasNevada+19,090
#13Pasco CountyNew Port RicheyFlorida+18,322
#14Wake CountyRaleighNorth Carolina+16,651
#15St. Johns CountySt. AugustineFlorida+15,550
#16Hillsborough CountyTampaFlorida+14,814
#17Bexar CountySan AntonioTexas+14,184
#18Ada CountyBoiseIdaho+13,947
#19Osceola CountyKissimmeeFlorida+12,427
#20St. Lucie CountyFort PierceFlorida+12,304

Many of these counties are located next to large cities, reflecting a shift to the suburbs and larger living spaces. However, as COVID-19 restrictions ease, and the pandemic housing boom tapers off due to rising interest rates, it remains to be seen whether the suburban shift will continue, or if people begin to migrate back to city centers.

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