HomeNewsSocial networking on mobile gaining momentum in Asia: IDC

Social networking on mobile gaining momentum in Asia: IDC

As per IDC's recent report, over 50 per cent of respondents interviewed in India, China, Korea and Thailand are accessing social networking sites using mobile phones.

Social networking site users in the Asia Pacific are increasingly switching over to the mobile medium, according to the findings IDC’s recent survey report, ‘Examining Usage, Perceptions, and Monetization: The Coming of Age for Social Network Sites in Asia Pacific’. IDC is a global market intelligence company which focuses on IT, telecom and consumer technology.
As per the report, 50 per cent the users interviewed are now accessing social networking sites via mobile phones in India, China, Korea and Thailand. This is particularly widespread in China and Thailand, where 62 per cent and 65 per cent of the given users get news alerts and notifications, receive and reply to messages, upload photos, or update personal status and profiles on popular networking sites via the mobile internet. However, Australia and Singapore have the lowest percentage with only 19 per cent and 25 per cent of respective users using mobile browsers to access these sites weekly.
The IDC survey also indicates that the high cost of mobile internet is possibly keeping many customers away from mobile social networking. According to the survey, a majority of the respondents who have never logged in to these sites through mobile before have cited high tariffs as the main obstacle. These users have said that they would try out mobile versions of the sites if the data rates became more affordable. Apart from tariffs, availability of user friendly mobile applications is also required to up the usage of mobile web.
Debbie Swee, market analyst, IDC Asia Pacific Emerging Technologies Research, said in a company statement, “The prevalence of owning a cellular phone over a PC in China, India and Thailand has directly boosted the popularity of mobile social networking sites access. For mobile operators in China, India and Thailand, IDC believes a low flat rate Internet access fee would complement and increase mobile social networking site adoption. However, in Australia, Korea and Singapore where data tariffs are already relatively low, operators need to correct users’ misconceptions of pricey data plans through advertising and other marketing efforts.”
IDC’s Asia Pacific social networking sites survey was conducted by interviewing 1,400 social network site users, aged between 15 and 35, from December 2008 to January 2009. The survey is part of a series of studies that evaluate the impact of Web 2.0 on Internet users in Australia, India, China, Korea, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand.

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