Here are all of the posts tagged ‘stats’.
It’s been another year of bumper growth for all things digital in India, with the latest in We Are Social’s series of studies into Digital, Social & Mobile usage around the world revealing that over a quarter of the world’s second largest nation now uses the internet on a regular basis:
Here are the key data headlines:
- Internet Users: 350 million, up 44% since our last report in July 2014
- Social Media Users: 134 million, up 26% in the past year
- Unique Mobile Users: 590 million – a penetration rate of 46%
- Mobile Internet Users: 159 million – 45% of all internet users
- Mobile Social Media Users: 97 million, up 5% since July 2014
Read on for our analysis of what these numbers mean in context.
Internet in India
The Internet and Mobile Association of India recently announced that internet users in India now exceed 350 million; a considerable jump since We Are Social’s previous report on digital use in India in July 2014, when the number was just 243 million.
This 44% growth is particularly encouraging, as it takes internet penetration past 25% for the first time. Our sense is that the impressive growth figure may be largely due to more accurate reporting, rather than a sudden surge in new internet users, but it’s clear that increasing mobile internet access has also contributed to an acceleration of internet adoption across the country:
Internet access in India still isn’t evenly distributed though, with rural users accounting for barely 17% of India’s internet community, despite representing more than 70% of the country’s population:
This disparity is changing thanks to mobile, but in contrast to most other developing nations, mobile access still accounts for less than half of India’s internet connections:
The balance will likely tip in the coming months though, with projections from the IAMAI and KPMG indicating that mobile internet will account for nearly two-thirds of all internet connections by 2017.
This shift is clear in terms of share of activity too; more than two-thirds of the web pages served in India in the past month went to desktops or laptops, but that figure is down 6% versus the same period last year:
India’s connection speeds remain disappointingly slow, however, with barely 10% of the country’s fixed-line connections achieving broadband status. The picture is slightly better for mobile users, but India still sits well below the global average reported in Akamai’s most recent State of the Internet report:
Despite these slow speeds – or perhaps because of them – Indian internet users spend more than their global peers using the internet, with the average internet user spending nearly 5 hours online every day.
Social media use accounts for more than half of that time, with social media users spending 26% more time engaging with their networks than watching television:
Social Media in India
Social media use continues to grow in India, but barely 10% of the country is currently ‘socially active':
The number of active users is increasing at a rate of roughly one every second, but even at that rate, it will take another 16 years before half the country’s population is using social media.
We suspect this will change quite considerably in the coming months though, largely due to a shift in behaviour related to mobile usage.
Facebook dominates today’s platform rankings in terms of monthly active users, but it’s worth highlighting that chat apps – and WhatsApp in particular – are already beginning to change the look of the social media landscape:
As mobile-focused internet connections claim a greater share of the overall user-base, we predict that these chat platforms will gain a much more important role in users’ lives – and therefore in marketers’ strategies.
This is where the biggest opportunity lies for internet and mobile companies in India; the company that can claim a disproportionate share of the nation’s burgeoning chat app user-base will be best placed to shape broader consumer behaviour – and revenues – on the internet.
It’s worth noting that non-mobile use of social media accounted for the majority of new users in the past year though, which we found quite surprising. Facebook recorded 28 million new users in India in the past year, but just 5 million of these – 18% – used mobile devices to access the service.
Overall, however, 72% of India’s social media users log in via mobile devices, and we predict that this proportion will increase in the coming months as mobile internet access accelerates further.
It’s also worth noting that the average social media user in India is considerably younger than the global average, with more than half of the platform’s Indian user base aged 23 or younger:
The numbers also show that men account for more than three-quarters of Facebook’s users – something we suspect is true of internet usage as a whole in India. This is something that we believe should be addressed urgently, whether that’s by government bodies or by the corporate world.
Providing women – everyone, for that matter – with better access to digital services has been shown to deliver significant societal benefits, so we believe that marketers should play a disproportionate role in helping to ensure that more women in India can access social and digital services.
In addition to the obvious benefits to the individual – better access to education, financial services and health information – such assistance should also help the marketer, providing a powerful, direct way to reach one of the world’s most untapped audiences.
Mobile in India
As is the case almost everywhere in the world today, mobile use is the big story in India’s digital scene, with 590 million people – almost half the country’s population – now owning a mobile device of some description.
Mobile subscriptions in India stand at 976 million, and with this figure climbing at a rate of roughly 3.5 new subscriptions every second, we fully expect that subscriptions will exceed 1 billion before the end of 2015:
As with internet use, however, mobile use is very unevenly distributed across the country, with considerably less than half of India’s rural population using mobile:
Even for those with a phone, the experience is still far from ideal. Smartphones are still very much in the minority, even when it comes to sales of new handsets:
This ratio has significant importance, as it is closely tied to the adoption of internet services and social media. More than three-quarters of the handsets in use in India today are of the more basic ‘feature phone’ variety, yet smartphones account for five times as much Facebook usage as feature phones do:
E-Commerce in India
Despite some great progress in recent months, e-commerce is still in its infancy in India. The value of online purchases in India totalled just US$12.5 billion in 2014 (INR 81,500 crore) – less than 3% of the value of China’s e-commerce market:
Encouragingly, however, more and more people are using internet-powered services to research products and purchase online, so we expect to see this number explode as mobile internet access, faster connectivity, and increased familiarity with online shopping combine in the coming months.
So what does all this mean for marketers? Here are our three key tips:
- Go Mobile: at least in the short-term, design all internet experiences to work via mobile devices and via relatively slow connections. Online video is definitely rising in popularity, but make sure that downloading it and watching it are even a possibility for your target audience.
- Be The Change: internet and social media access in India are considerably behind the global average, and this impacts marketers’ abilities to reach and engage key audiences. We recommend that brands use some of their marketing budgets to enable more people to access (faster) internet services, whether that’s by subsidising data plans, providing free internet services like internet.org, or by working with government bodies to bring internet access for all a step closer.
- Get Involved In E-Commerce Now: India’s e-commerce market may still be nascent, but now is the time to get involved. There are still many opportunities for brands to gain early mover advantage, and brands that can help e-commerce platforms in their growth stand to forge powerful relationships will stand them in great stead when the e-commerce revolution gathers pace.
Indian marketers looking for more tailored insights may also like to note that I’ll be presenting at the upcoming International Advertising Association Whats Coming Next conference, which takes place in Kochi, India, between September 3rd and 5th. You can find full details here.
If you’d like tailored advice on what these tips mean specifically for your brand, get in touch with our team in one of our 10 offices around the world for more information.
We’d like to offer our special thanks to GlobalWebIndex for allowing us to use their data in this report. We’d also like to thank the Internet and Mobile Association of India, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, Ericsson, GSMA Intelligence, StatCounter and Akamai for the public data they share that makes these reports possible. For more details on data sources, please see the full report.
The latest report in our series of studies into Digital, Social & Mobile use around the world shows that the pace of digital adoption in China shows few signs of slowing.
You can read the full report in the SlideShare embed above (or download it here), but numbers don’t mean much on their own, so we’ll use this post to dig into the significance of the data and their associated trends for marketers.
To get us started though, here are the key data headlines:
- Internet Users: 668 million, a 6% year-on-year increase
- Social Media Users: 659 million – more than the USA and Europe combined
- Unique Mobile Users: 675 million, responsible for 1.3 billion mobile subscriptions
- Mobile Internet Users: 594 million, accounting for 89% of all China’s internet users
- Mobile Social Media Users: 574 million, up 15 million since this time last year
The year-on-year growth rates tell interesting stories too (note that the mobile figures in this slide represent the growth in mobile subscriptions, not unique users):
We’ll examine each of these in detail in the sections below.
Internet in China
Roughly 100,000 people in China started using the internet every day over the past year – that’s more than one every second.
Much of this growth is being driven by improved mobile access, with close to 90% of the country’s netizens using mobile devices to access the internet. It’s worth noting that this is often in addition to PC-based usage too, but an increasing number of the country’s internet users are mobile-only, especially in rural areas.
When it comes to the total volume of web traffic, PC-based access still dominates, with 56% of the web pages served to China’s netizens in the past month going to laptop or desktop computers. However, this figure is down 29% year-on-year, while the number of web page requests from mobile devices has jumped 136% to 42%.
These trends suggest that mobile usage will account for more than half of all China’s web activity by early 2016.
Despite mobile’s promise of ubiquitous internet access, however, internet usage still isn’t evenly distributed in China, and a marked difference remains between urban and rural usage rates. Nearly two-thirds of China’s urban population now uses the internet every month, but barely 3 in 10 of China’s rural citizens are online:
The good news is that connection speeds are up considerably on last year, with the average fixed-connection access speed up 17% year-on-year according to Akamai. It’s worth noting that the average mobile connection speed is considerably higher than that of fixed connections though, with the average connection in China now considered ‘broadband’ (i.e. 4Mbps or above).
Social Media in China
The overall number of social media users in China grew more slowly than we expected over the past year, but this is more likely due to a change in behaviour, rather than a waning of interest in social media.
It’s also worth noting that social media usage in China is already at a very high level, with the numbers suggesting that 99% of China’s internet community uses social media of some description.
The numbers for individual platforms tell the more interesting story though. QQ, Tencent’s ever-popular instant messaging service, still claims the country’s top position in terms of monthly active users (MAUs), and despite the vast majority of its users residing in China, it also claims the second-place spot in the worldwide rankings behind Facebook (click here to read more about the global picture).
It’s worth noting that more people sign in to QQ via mobile devices each month than sign in to WeChat, but WeChat offers more varied services and functionality for both users and marketers.
User numbers suggest that QZone still dominates when it comes to traditional ‘social networking’, but WeChat (or Weixin, as it’s know in China) is quickly catching up, and is the platform that most users claim to use on a regular basis (note the difference between ‘use’ and ‘sign in’, the latter being the metric many of the platforms use to measure ‘active’ users).
For those who are still relatively unfamiliar with Chinese social media, Baidu Tieba may be a new discovery. Tieba, or “Post Bar” as the platform calls itself in its English literature, is a community that has grown up around specific areas of user interest related to the searches that people conduct on Baidu, China’s largest search engine.
Meanwhile, readers of our previous China reports (2013, 2014) will notice the absence of Tencent Weibo in this ranking. Tencent stopped publishing monthly active user figures for Tencent Weibo a number of months ago, and we have interpreted this to mean that the company has de-prioritised the platform in favour of its three larger ‘products’, QQ, Qzone and WeChat. Tencent Weibo appears to remain popular with many users though, with 38% of China’s internet users claiming to have used the platform in the past month (see below).
Research from GlobalWebIndex suggests that more than 6 in 10 internet users in China used WeChat in the past month. Sina Weibo comes in second, with 54% of survey respondents claiming to have used the service in the past 30 days.
It’s interesting to note that Facebook, Google+ and Twitter all appear in this list too; they may be officially ‘blocked’ by the Great Firewall, but GlobalWebIndex’s research suggest that a considerable number of China’s netizens are getting round these blocks to access non-Chinese social platforms.
87% of China’s social media users now access via mobile devices at some point each month, with platforms like WeChat helping to drive overall numbers up 77 million over the past 12 months – a year-on-year increase of 15% that equates to more than 200,000 new users every day, or almost 2.5 new users every second.
At 1 hour and 43 minutes per day, social media accounts for just under half of all the time that people spend online in China. The country’s social media users spend 23% longer using social media than they do watching TV each day, although it’s worth noting that much of this time overlaps, with many TV viewers engaging in ‘second-screen’ social media use at the same time.
It’s worth noting that use of tablets appears to be down slightly year-on-year though, with 22% fewer web page requests coming from tablet devices in the past month compared to this time one month ago.
Mobile in China
With 675 million unique subscribers in China, almost half the country’s population now owns a mobile phone, and we fully expect to see the country pass this milestone before the end of 2015.
The number of mobile subscriptions in China rose significantly in 2014 too, with three new subscribers every second contributing to annual growth of 94 million – an 8% year-on-year increase.
The number of mobile subscriptions in China is now very close to the number of people living in the country, which suggest that the average user still maintains close to 2 active connections.
However, we expect that this ratio will reduce over the coming months as more and more people upgrade from feature phones to smartphones; the main reason why individuals operate more than one mobile contract is to benefit from intra-network deals, but data-powered communications such as chat apps and VOIP are more efficient and effective ways of achieving the same benefits.
Smartphones are clearly the must-have devices in China today, accounting for 90% of new handset sales. They already account for just less than two-thirds of all handsets in active use, and we expect their overall share to increase steadily over the coming months as more people renew their devices.
When it comes to internet-powered activities on mobile devices, Chinese netizens appear to be particularly interested in checking the weather.
China’s mobile users also appear to have embraced m-commerce, with reports suggesting that 20% of the country’s population have made a recent online purchase via their mobile device.
E-Commerce in China
E-commerce more generally appears to be thriving in China, with almost one in three internet users buying online each month.
The country’s consumer e-commerce market was worth more than a quarter of a trillion US dollars in the six months to June 2015, with the year’s biggest shopping event – Singles Day – still to come. Sales on Alibaba’s various sites exceeded US$9 billion in just one day last November, and there’s every chance that number will pass $10 billion on 11th November this year.
So what does all this mean for brands? Here are our three key tips, designed specifically for non-Chinese marketers looking to make sense of the world’s largest consumer market:
China’s Different: it’s obvious that the platforms that dominate in China are markedly different to those that marketers are familiar with elsewhere – even those in their Asian neighbours. However, it’s not just the platforms that are different; the ways that Chinese netizens use social channels is also markedly different, and marketers need to carefully adapt their approaches for China’s cultural and societal idiosyncrasies as much as for its technological differences. One size does not fit all when it comes to China, and marketers would do well to engage the expertise of a partner who understands the ‘how’ as well as the ‘what’.
1-to-1 Social: The numbers in this year’s report highlight the growing popularity of chat apps – a trend that we’ve seen elsewhere in the world too. The growing popularity of chat apps presents a new set of opportunities for marketers, as many of the conversations that take place on these platforms are more private in nature, taking place between individuals and small groups (versus the public environments that Western marketers will know from Facebook and Twitter). In order to take advantage of the ‘intimate’ nature of these one-to-one conversations, however, marketers will need to explore new approaches to social media and content marketing, ensuring that the tactics they employ make it easy for audiences to find and consume content on one platform (e.g. video-sharing services like Youku or Tudou), and then share that content proactively via chat apps. This will require greater emphasis on highly engaging content and organic sharing, rather than an approach that relies on paid media to push mediocre content to the masses.
Social Selling: China’s netizens are already very comfortable buying things online, whether that’s through their PCs or via their mobile devices. The next big opportunity for marketers is to understand how the dynamics of social referral work in China, and use that to move from social engagement to social conversion.
If you’d like tailored advice on what these tips mean specifically for your brand, get in touch with our team in one of our 10 offices around the world for more information.
We’d like to offer our special thanks to GlobalWebIndex for allowing us to use their data in this report. We’d also like to thank CNNIC, Ericsson, GSMA Intelligence, StatCounter and Akamai for the public data they share that makes these reports possible. For more details on data sources, please see the full report.
Our latest statshot on the state of Digital, Social & Mobile usage around the world shows that the pace of change shows no signs of slowing:
Year-on-year growth remains strong, particularly in the use of mobile social media:
- Internet user growth: +7.6%
- Social media user growth: +8.7%
- Mobile user growth: +3.4%
- Mobile social media user growth: +23.3%
There are some important changes to the ways people are using mobile devices too – read on for the full story.
The latest data suggest that global internet penetration now stands at 43%, up from 41% in August 2014.
The numbers also show that 225 million people around the world used the internet for the first time in the past 12 months, translating to 600,000 new users every day, or 7 every second.
However, we believe that the figures in this month’s report still under-estimate the true number of internet users due to the considerable number of mobile internet users coming online in developing markets.
In addition to the existing 2.9 billion mobile broadband subscribers around the world, Ericsson reports that mobile broadband subscriptions are currently growing at 30% year-on-year, with 50 million new subscribers every month.
Social media usage continues to grow around the world, with global penetration rates now in excess of 30%.
Facebook continues to dominate the global landscape, accounting for almost 1.5 billion users.
The world’s favourite social platform shows little sign of losing its grip either, with 180 million new users joining the community over the past 12 months, up 13.7% year-on-year.
To put that in perspective, Facebook is still adding around half a million new users every day, or almost 6 new users every second.
Other platforms still outperform Facebook in some markets though, notably China, where Facebook access continues to be restricted.
QZone remains the most active social network in China, with an active global user base of 668 million. QZone grew 4% year-on-year according to the latest data from owner Tencent, but this is tempered by growth in Tencent’s real growth engine, WeChat, which added almost as many users as Facebook in the past 12 months (see below for more stats on WeChat).
VKontakte continues to lead in Russia, but the latest data suggest that globally active users on the Russia-based platform are falling slightly each month.
More than half of the world’s population now uses a mobile phone, although reports of the actual number of users varies between sources:
The 3.4% annual growth in the number of unique mobile users around the world misrepresents the story that’s taking place behind the numbers.
The real growth is in the adoption of smartphones, with 2 million devices sold every day around the world.
This shift to ‘smart devices’ means that the consolidation we highlighted in our analysis of our global report back in January continues.
A key reason for this is that data-powered services such as chat and VOIP apps mean people no longer need to maintain multiple handsets in order to benefit from network-specific cheap calls.
The growth in sales of smart devices has resulted in a significant change in global share by type of device, with smartphones now accounting for more than 40% of the world’s active handsets (i.e. handsets connected to an active mobile subscription).
Feature phones still dominate, accounting for 6 out of 10 of the world’s active phones, but with smartphones contributing 75% of all new phones sold in Q1 2015, it’s likely that smartphones will account for more than half of all globally active handsets before the end of the first half of 2016.
Despite the slowing growth in the number of unique mobile users, the steady growth in the number of active mobile subscriptions has continued thanks to the growth in machine-to-machine (M2M) subscriptions associated with ‘the internet of things’.
Data from Ericsson suggest that there are roughly a quarter of a billion M2M subscriptions in use around the world today, accounting for barely 3.3% of the global total (most subscriptions are used to power mobile phones for human-to-human communications).
However, Ericsson’s projections suggest that this share will grow to more than 25% over the next 5 years to almost 8 billion active subscriptions – that’s more than the global total for all types of cellular subscription today.
Mobile Social Media
The number of users accessing social media through mobile devices has exploded in the past 12 months, with 1 million new users accessing via phones or tablets every single day.
This has delivered year-on-year growth of more than 23%, with global penetration now exceeding a quarter of the world’s population.
What’s more, with around 12 new active mobile social users every second, it’s likely that the global total will exceed 2 billion before the end of 2015.
However, it’s worth noting that there are some interesting developments within the mobile social world too, with the growth of mobile-centric ‘chat apps’ overshadowing the growth of more conventional social networks.
WhatsApp is the world’s fastest growing ‘big’ platform (i.e. platforms with more than 100 million active users); the Facebook-owned platform has added more than 300 million new users since August 2014, achieving impressive year-on-year growth of 60%.
Meanwhile, the data suggest that Facebook Messenger may have doubled its user base since this time last year, with active users up 200 million since the start of 2015 alone.
WeChat (Weixin) added roughly 150 million users around the world in the past 12 months too, translating to year-on-year growth of 39%.
It’s worth noting that Viber is also growing at an impressive rate, especially in Southeast Asia, where it is capturing significant share. The Skype-like service already has around a quarter of a billion monthly active users, up 40 million (19%) since the start of 2015.
As we reported in our comprehensive global report back in January, the future of all things digital seems interwoven with the growth of smart mobile devices.
As these devices become an integral part of life all over the world, marketers will increasingly need to understand how people are using these devices, and not just how many are using them.
Smart devices are so much more than just phones; for many people around the world, they are our primary tool for communicating with friends, family and business contacts, for accessing the internet, for watching content such as TV shows and movies, for playing games, and many other activities besides.
As a result, marketers need to stop treating smart devices as merely another channel through which to deliver ad impressions, and start using them to create more of a meaningful impression for their brands.
If you’d like some tips and ideas on how to make that possible, you may like to read these:
Alternatively, if you’re looking for more stats on individual countries, try our in-depth Digital, Social & Mobile reports:
The digital world passed another huge milestone today, with InternetLiveStats reporting that the number of global internet users has just passed the 3 billion mark.
InternetLiveStats extrapolates its numbers from data provided by the ITU, the World Bank, and the United Nations, so the timing won’t be exact; however, the number remains a very useful guide to the continuing growth of the internet around the world.
Beyond this historic milestone, there are some more juicy numbers in this month’s Digital Statshot too, which you’ll find in the SlideShare above.
Read on for our analysis of those numbers, and what they mean for marketers.
2014 has seen steady growth in internet usage, with current trends suggesting that global users are increasing by more than 5% year-on-year.
Critically, Statista reports that roughly three-quarters of the world’s 3 billion users access the internet via mobile devices, and this ratio is steadily increasing as data connections become more accessible in developing nations.
Some of the world’s leading social networks released new user data in the past month too, with Facebook and Twitter both publishing updated user figures in October:
Facebook’s active user based showed growth of 2.3% in the past quarter, reaching 1.35 billion in time for the company’s latest quarterly report last week.
However, Facebook’s data also suggest that growth in some of the platform’s key countries – notably India and Indonesia – has slowed considerably in recent months, although our understanding is that this is likely due to Facebook ‘purging’ fake accounts, rather than an actual loss of interest in the world’s largest social network.
Twitter’s new numbers show that the platform now claims 284 million active users around the world, which, despite the stock market’s reaction, still demonstrates steady growth.
The on-going rise of mobile chat apps continues to be 2014′s hottest social media story, and with WhatsApp, WeChat, and LINE all showing strong growth in recent months, this trend looks set to dominate well into 2015 too:
This trend is mirrored by the continuing rise of mobile social networking too, with data from Facebook, Tencent and VKontakte indicating that more than 80% of the world’s social media users now access via mobile devices.
Please note that, following Tencent’s announcement that it will no longer support its Tencent Weibo platform, we’ve removed this from our reporting, as we believe that this move indicates that Tencent believes marketers would be better to use one of the company’s other platforms (which include QQ, QZone and WeChat).
Also, despite registering more than 1 billion monthly active users, we have opted not to include YouTube data in this report, as social connectivity is not the site’s primary function.
Mobile continues to register impressive growth around the world too, with GSMA Intelligence registering almost 1 million new unique users every day since our last report – that’s more than 11 new users every second.
The total number of active subscriptions continues to grow too, and at 7.267 billion, the number of connections is rapidly approaching the same figure as the world’s total population, which today stands at 7.272 billion according to Worldometers.
However, it’s important to note that the average mobile user still maintains more than 2 active mobile subscriptions, and global mobile penetration still hovers around the 50% mark:
The number of unique mobile phone users around the world has just passed 50% of the world’s total population.
The usage figures – provided by GSMA Intelligence – suggest that 100 million more people started using a mobile device since April of this year.
To put those figures in context, that’s more than 750,000 new mobile users every day – or 9 new users every second.
Changing Usage Patterns
Meanwhile, the average mobile user still maintains roughly 2 active contracts per phone, with the total number of active mobile connections almost equal to the number of people living on earth.
The average of 1.97 connections per user indicates a slight drop since April though, when the figure was 1.99.
This fall may in part be fuelled by an increasing move to smartphones; as more people gain access to mobile data plans and start to use ‘chat apps’ like WhatsApp and WeChat, the need to maintain multiple mobile contracts across different networks in order to benefit from cost efficiencies will diminish:
On that note, it’s worth noting that smartphone adoption is continuing apace; Ericsson reports that more than one-third of all active mobile contracts now run on smartphones, while smart devices accounted for 65% of the 300 million new handset sold between April and June of this year.
Critically, this 300 million figure – when compared to the growth in overall mobile users outlined above – suggests that many existing mobile users are upgrading to smart devices.
However, more than 4.6 billion mobile connections around the world still run on more basic, ‘feature phone’ handsets.
Connecting On The Go
Despite the continued dominance of feature phones though, the use of data-powered services is becoming more widespread: in the past quarter, Ericsson report that mobile broadband subscriptions exceeded 2.4 billion, while more than 1.5 billion social media users around the world accessed their accounts via mobile devices in the past 30 days:
For more data on Mobile, Social and Digital usage, see our full range of free reports.