SINGAPORE: Mobile shoppers in China and India have a strong attachment to their mobile phones, and are also more likely to use them to play games than to make calls, new research has revealed.

A report from Draftfcb, the global agency, called The Mobile Shopper: A 2013 Draftfcb Global Shopper Snapshot, interviewed more than 7,500 consumers in the US, UK, Germany, Brazil, South Africa, UAE, Saudi Arabia, India and China. It found that mobile is redefining the shopper experience across the globe.

"Mobile users in China and India have a strong connection with their phones and all of them see themselves using their devices more in the future," Charles Cook, global planning and research analyst at Draftfcb, told Campaign Asia-Pacific.

"This is a large population and only set to get larger," he added.

He also noted that this group typically used their phones to play games more than they did to make calls, and suggested there was an opening for brands to reach them via this route.

Mobile shoppers in these two countries were also the most likely to have used a mobile eWallet, with 45% of Indians and 41% of Chinese having done so.

The report also uncovered some distinct differences between mobile shoppers in the two Asian countries.

In India, for example, 61% of mobile shoppers were male, marking the largest shift from the overall population in any market, and suggesting mobile is "empowering a more male-centric vision of shopping".

Indians were also more likely to shop from work or at home, while Chinese tended to buy on the go. Cook advised marketers to recognise this fact.

In addition, Chinese mobile shoppers relied more heavily on reviews than many other markets, so Cook suggested that brands offer forums for discussion.

With mobile tending to turn everyone into shoppers, Debra Coughlin, global chief marketing officer of Draftfcb, observed there were "huge implications for both brands and retailers".

"The biggest challenge for marketers is to provide these ever more empowered consumers with the type of experiences that matter," she said. "Those who can do this effectively will win."

Data sourced from Campaign Asia-Pacific, Draftfcb; additional content by Warc staff