App downloads and daily active users for ed-tech continue to decline, reporting the lowest-ever numbers in September. According to a report by Apptopia, online education apps are unable to sustain the user adoption peaks seen during the pandemic. The report stated, “While expectations from online education apps were running high during the pandemic, Apptopia data suggests that the industry has been unable to sustain the user adoption seen during the peaks.”
The slowing growth in this initial phase is a concern for the industry as well as key players such as BYJU’S and Unacademy, Macquarie Research said in a report. According to the report, downloads in the September quarter have been the lowest ever in the last four years. This is also the case for the active users trend, where monthly active users reported in the September quarter were at a four-year low.
The report added that BYJU’S was reporting encouraging engagement metrics. The ed-tech sector experienced a major boom during the pandemic; however, it is struggling now. Ed-tech companies are fighting layoffs, funding crunch and overall economic uncertainty.
Changing consumption patterns
Experts note that diminishing engagement online might not be as worrying a trend for ed-tech companies. Sanchit Vir Gogia, Chief Analyst, Founder and CEO of Greyhound Research, explained, “While demand-side pressures are undoubtedly there, consumption patterns for ed-tech have changed dramatically since the pandemic, which explains a shift in focus towards offline delivery of eduction even by ed-tech companies. So metrics such as monthly active users, app downloads might not accurately represent the health of an ed-tech company.”
On the other hand, companies such as BYJU’S are laying off employees in droves. In November, BYJU’S laid off over 12,000 employees and Unacademy gave pink slips to 10 per cent of its employees, while FrontRow laid off 75 per cent of its workforce in October.