Swift and dramatic rise
There’s been a lot of buzz around mobile for the past several years – and for good reason. Whether its scientists doing interviews on their way to Antarctica, surfers in Australia posting pics to Instagram, or college students searching facts for their upcoming paper, mobile devices play an important role in everyday life.
Mobile’s rise has been swift and dramatic, and shows no signs of slowing down. Last year marked an important milestone with American adults reporting that they spent more time consuming media on their mobile devices than on their computers.
Upward trends in all demographics
There is very clear evidence that mobile is reaching a tipping point. Since 2011, mobile internet has been on an upward trajectory. Internet users are getting online using their mobile phones. Currently, 3 in 4 online adults access the internet via mobile each month. While mobile still hasn’t surpassed PCs and laptops in terms of internet access, stats do indicate that may not be the case for long with ownership rates at 87% for smartphones and 88% for PC/laptop.
Such a strong growth in smartphone ownership is bound to have an impact on future internet access rates.
In addition to more people getting online via mobile devices, mobile is also becoming the most important device for users in emerging markets. In the fast-growth regions of APAC and MENA, smartphones come in on top (both on 40%). According to a 2015 survey by GWI, 32% of internet users reported smartphones as their most important device, with laptops only marginally higher with 34%.
Almost half of internet users ages 16-24 report that smartphones are their most important internet device.
Among this age group, 44% spend their daily internet time online via mobile.
As mobile continues to grow it will emerge as the most-used access point for the internet, resulting in even more online time spent via mobile devices. This will be even more evident with the expected influx of mobile-first consumers to come online in fast-growth markets with internet expansion.
Overall, the migration to mobile will have interesting and profound implications for how and when brands communicate with consumers and how we all continue to engage with the world around us.