Just under two in five (39 percent) of smartphone owners regularly download apps, according to OpenCloud.
The firm's My Mobile Lifestyle 2010 survey revealed that in the last month, half of smartphone users have not downloaded an app.
The average user downloads 14 apps, and does not use them much following the initial 'app download honeymoon'. Furthermore, 43 percent of smartphone users said they are not planning to download any more apps.
More than four in five (83 percent) said they regularly use their handset for texting, while 47 percent said they use their mobile phone in place of a camera to take pictures and nearly a third (29 percent) use their phone to browse the mobile web.
Storing and playing music was a reason to use the phone for 28 percent, while just over one in five (22 percent) use their handset to sent and receive emails.
Furthermore, 46 percent of mobile phone owners said they purchased their handset because it meant they'd 'have the latest gadget' while 21 percent purchased it for the social media services it gave them access to.
"We know that consumers are increasingly savvy with technology and, in particular, their use and expectations of mobile phones. However, apps are not the reason consumers buy their phones, and they are certainly far from being the 'cash cow' operators hoped for," said Jeff Gordon, CEO of OpenCloud.