Study Finds Low Levels of Mobile Web Use

76% of mobile phone users dont use their mobile to access the Internet, a UK-wide study into mobile habits by research firm Essential Research has found. Indeed, 60% of respondents claimed they did not own a mobile with Inernet access and only 30% of these said they were interested in getting one. 31% of Smartphone owners said they have never used their phone to connect to the Internet, while 24% use it to go online less than once a week, and 8% said they had tried it, but dont intend to do so again.
The independent study, Brandheld, questioned more than 2,000 mobile phone owners aged 16+ using a combination of qualitative and quantitative techniques, plus ethnographic case studies. The focus of the research was developed in consultation with a number of well known brands and businesses from across the mobile industry
Alex Charlton, Partner at Essential Research which conducted the study over six months in 2009 says:
This type of research doesnt often see the light of day, and what weve found is pretty surprising news: there is an enormous gulf between the perceptions we hold about mobiles being a big part of our Internet lives and the reality. In fact only a small percentage of us are truly Internet mobile users and the industry has a big job to do to move mobile Internet into our everyday lives.
Despite lower than expected adoption and usage of mobile internet however, consumer appetite for mobile media services, such as live TV and radio, is strong, with 86% of current mobile Internet users and 56% of non-mobile Internet users saying they would be willing to access these types of service via their mobile phone.
The biggest driver of mobile internet adoption to date is social mdeia. Almost as many daily mobile Internet users (70%) use social media services including social networks, instant messenger, blogs and forums on their phones as they do on their computer (79%). In some cases mobile applications for services like Facebook and Twitter are replacing computer access.
The ability to perform everyday activities such as checking real time travel updates (33%) and tracking in-store offers, coupons and vouchers (31%) were the most interesting to those that dont currently use mobile Internet. Furthermore, they deemed well known brands the most appropriate to provide services for the mobile Internet, with 30% saying that they would like their favourite supermarket to offer grocery-related services and 29% claiming that they are interested in their banks or building societies providing financial related services.