Australia leads smartphone revolution

Sep 9

Australia leads smartphone revolution

Earlier this year Google conducted worldwide research of 300,000 individuals to ask about their smartphone useage. This is interesting because we get to compare and contrast markets.

So what came out of Australia? Well apparently we have the second highest smartphone penetration in the world – ahead of the US, UK, and Japan. Google found that ‘the majority of smartphone owners had bought their device in the preceeding 12 months, which means that Australia went from lagging to leading the worldwide smartphone revolution in just one year’. Google estimates that each month 1-2% of the entire population of Australia buys a smartphone.

Here is a summary of what Google found:
  • Not just on the go:  81% of Australians used their smartphones at home during the past 7 days- compared to just 66% on the go. Nearly 1 in 2 use their smartphone while watching TV, while 1 in 3 use smartphones and another Internet-enabled device at the same time.
  • Smartphones are good for business: 49% use their smartphone to research and then call businesses–while 45% visit a business they’ve found using their smartphone.
  • We can now indulge our obsession with real estate 24×7: 1 in 5 Australians we surveyed had looked for an apartment or house with their smartphone–a figure 33% higher than the US or UK.
  • Search is big on smartphones: 2 in 5 of Australian smartphone owners use mobile search daily- more than the UK or Germany, and almost as high as the number who use desktop search daily.
  • Apps, apps, apps: our Australian survey respondents had 25 apps on average per smartphone–that’s versus 23 in the US & UK. They’re not just free apps, either; Australians averaged 8 paid apps per phone.
  • And now, the answer we’ve all been waiting for… 1 in 5 Aussie smartphone owners would rather give up their TV than their smartphone.

So what this means to me is that mobile is already replacing our computers at home, we are even less interested in what our partners are saying to us while we’re watching TV and that Australian are ahead of the world curve in adopting and using smartphones.

Now contrast this to how many businesses are using mobile to drive their business – whether it be app or making their websites mobile friendly. There seems to be a massive gap in commerce vs. consumer here, and like the London Tube says we have to ‘Mind the Gap’ or commerce is in for a painful and embarressing experience. (Despite being Mr Bean-like, thankfully I never fell down the gap while I lived in London.)

Now for some fun facts from elsewhere in the world. Personally, I think Google could have used some of the same questions to spice their survey up a bit (hmmm… well I did work at Mills & Boon for a few years which used to conduct world-wide romance surveys and compared and contrasted countries and discovered trends like ‘Necking is hot, but tongues are not’…)

In August  TeleNav conducted a study about what smartphone owners would be willing to give up for a week rather than go without their mobile phone. They found:

– 33% would rather give up sex of which 70% were women
– Many would give up their favorite tipple (70%), caffeine (55%) or chocolate 63%)
– 54% would give up exercise
– 22% would give up brushing their teeth
– 20% would give up their computer.

One in five respondents (21%) was even willing to go shoeless rather than phoneless.

And for the fashionistas: Smartphone users were much more likely (42%) than feature phone users (15%) to say their phone reflects their overall sense of style.

So in summary, I have a request of Google. Can you make your survey more interesting next time – I like your facts but I like Telenav’s more!









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