Mobile web transforms Indian habits

30 July 2012

NEW DELHI: Mobile internet users in India are spending much less time watching television and reading newspapers than before they accessed this medium, a study has shown.

ViziSense, the digital measurement company, and Komli Media, the technology group, surveyed 2,024 people who regularly accessed the web via phones or tablets, and discovered 87% did so each day.

On average, participants had reduced their TV and newspaper consumption by 50%, and 40% positively preferred reading content from print titles on digital appliances.

Some 60% of the mobile internet audience had first used this medium over a year ago, and 39% logged on four or five times a day. An additional 48% did so at least once every 24 hours.

A further 7% surfed the net on these gadgets between three and four times per week, standing at 3% for doing so once in this period, and around 2% when it came to going online once a month.

Almost half of the sample engaged in this pastime for over two hours a day, typically spending more than 60 minutes on the web per session.

A 99% share of the connected population sent and received emails through their phone, and 95% signed in to social networks like Facebook and Twitter.

To date, 55% of the panel had also used m-banking tools. An additional 53% had bought goods or services in this way, reaching 46% for paying utility bills and 41% for downloading paid-for apps.

When breaking out the current user base, 82% were found to be male and 18% female. Some 70% fell in the 20–34 year old age group, and 46% lived in the country's eight biggest cities.

Elsewhere, 14% of interviewees owned a tablet. An extra 48% wished to buy one to use alongside their smartphone, and 9% wanted to replace their mobile with a slate. Another 29% were not interested in acquiring one of these gadgets.

"The survey establishes two major trends; the shift in screens is for real and that English print is migrating to mobile phones through WAP sites and applications, especially around lifestyle, travel and sports content," Amit Bhartiya, of ViziSense, said.

Data sourced from ViziSense; additional content by Warc staff