The global smartphone application market for mobile healthcare is expected to reach $1.3bn in 2012, up from $718m in 2011, according to a report.

Mobile Health Market Report 2011-2016 said the mobile healthcare market will be driven by downloads, in-app advertisements, mHealth services, direct transactions and sensor sales.

The number of mHealth application users who downloaded a smartphone mHealth application at least once is likely to reach 247 million this year, 2012, compared to the 124 million users who downloaded mHealth smarthphone applications in 2011.

The report, by research2guidance, investigates mHealth applications as a function of the total number of applications, the kinds of applications available and the relative size of the various categories.

The mobile health market report provides data, key market figures, technology trends and social trends and analysis on the mobile health market to multiple groups, including pharmaceutical companies, device manufacturers, medcomms, healthcare industry consultants, medical and government organisations.