Mobile activity rises in Europe

27 October 2011

LONDON: Mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets now deliver almost 5% of digital traffic across five of Europe's biggest markets, with Apple's products taking a lead role, new figures show.

According to comScore, the research firm, web-enabled wireless appliances accounted for 4.6% of all digital activity in France, Germany, Italy Spain and the UK during August 2011.

More specifically, 91.4m mobile subscribers reported using a smartphone in these countries in the same month, up by 46% year on year.

This equates to 38.9% of the entire mobile audience, a total reaching 45.6% in the UK, 44.5% in Spain, 39.5% in Italy, 35.3% in France and 32.2% in Germany.

Jeremy Copp, comScore's vice president, mobile, Europe, said: "With more options available for consuming digital media on the go than ever before, many users now access online content from multiple platforms throughout the day."

Similarly, the UK posted the highest level of mobile browser usage, on 45.9%. A third of French and Spanish subscribers engaged in this pastime, but lower ratings in Germany and Italy pulled the average down to 34%.

Elsewhere, 33.5% of interviewees utilised apps in August, again peaking in the UK on 43.7%, over ten percentage points ahead of the other nations assessed.

Another 22.6% of mobile users visited social networking sites and blogs via their phone, with 34.3% of Britons logging on to services like Facebook, versus only 16.8% of Germans.

Currently, Apple's iOS operating system contributes 30.5% of all active "connected" devices (excluding ereaders and feature phones), thanks to the popularity of the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.

Gadgets powered by Nokia's Symbian secured 28.7% here, with Google Android on 23.5%, easily beating Research in Motion on 8.1%, and Microsoft's Windows on 3.7%.

While Symbian's share of the market is driven solely by smartphones, nearly half of Apple's iOS share originates with the iPod Touch and iPad. In contrast, slates made up just 16% of Android's figures.

In terms of the proportion of digital traffic, however, the iOS platform channels over 60% of activity, with the iPad supplying 43% of this total, despite making up less than a quarter of connected Apple devices.

Data sourced from comScore; additional content by Warc staff