According to Orange's Exposure 2012/13 study, 54 per cent of mobile owners use mobile media, up from 44 per cent in 2011. The operator's definition of 'mobile media' includes includes browsing the internet, using apps, or consuming content of any variety, but not professional activities – essentially anything that advertisers can use to reach consumers via mobile.
The Exposure study, now in its fifth year, is based on research carried out by TNS on Orange's behalf, examining mobile habits in the UK, France and Spain. Browsers proved the preferred way to access the internet for the third year running, with 82 per cent of mobile media users primarily using the browser, versus 61 per cent for apps.
50 per cent of respondents who use mobile media expressed interested in at least one mobile advertising format – with discount coupons proving the most popular format.
According to Orange, increasingly mobile usage has pushed consumers’ attention away from traditional media, with interaction with videogames, magazines, and the cinema all falling by roughly 20 per cent. Meanwhile, 89 per cent of mobile media users supplement their TV viewing with a second screen, and 50 per cent discussing what they are watching on social networks or TV apps. A third of mobile users investigate potential purchases based on something they've seen on TV, and more than a quarter respond to shortcodes which appear in TV adverts.
89 per cent of mobile media users have a smartphone, up from 76 per cent in 2011, with Android proving more popular than iOS – particularly in Spain, where Android accounts for half of all mobile phones. Orange says this is largely down to the ascent of Samsung, which now makes up 25 per cent of all smartphones across the three markets.
Tablet penetration has also increased, from seven per cent in 2011, to 17 per cent of the population. And shopping is proving popular on tablet devices, with 62 per cent using them for shopping – to pay, redeem or reserve – over the last six months. 58 per cent of tablet users have paid for something online, and 47 per cent gave their credit card details, suggesting the security issues around mCommerce are lessening, at least on tablets.
The research included teenagers (classed as 11-18 year olds) for the first time – and found, as you might expect, that they're especially keen on mobile. 69 per cent of teens are mobile media users, and smartphone penetration is 83 per cent, and as high as 95 per cent in Spain.
BlackBerry devices are much more popular among this age group – with 46 per cent of teens owning one, compared to 22 per cent of adults – which Orange says can be put down to the lower cost and durability of the handsets, to say nothing of BBM's appeal.