When GWI’s 34 countries are ranked by the share of their online time devoted to mobile each day, national and regional differences are strikingly clear to see (a subject we explore in our new Digital vs Traditional Media report).

In several fast-growth markets, mobiles now account for 35%+ of online time, peaking at 48% in Saudi Arabia. In fact, this market is one of the handful where 16-24s are already mobile-first consumers – with the Middle East and Latin America being at the very forefront of this trend.

In contrast, the equivalent figures can be much, much lower in several mature markets (dipping to 20% or below in digitally conservative France, Belgium and Japan). That might be a result of very different age profiles, with mature countries containing much more demographically representative online populations, but it still underlines just how important the mobile web has become in emerging markets.

Broadly speaking, consumers in these fast-growth countries are online via a mobile for 2+ hours a day, whereas their counterparts in mature markets are connecting to the mobile web for 0.5-2 hours. Over time, we can expect to see these differences become less pronounced but there’s little doubt that fast-growth countries will remain prominent for mobile web usage in the short- and even medium-term future.

For more detail on this subject, download a free summary of our Digital vs Traditional Media report here. Alternatively, clients can access the full version here.


Written by

Jason is Chief Research Officer at GlobalWebIndex. He oversees the global research and insight teams, directs the world-leading research study and specializes in analyzing consumer trends. He writes for titles like the Huffington Post and MediaPost and is a frequent contributor to stories on media outlets such as BBC News, CNN, the Guardian, Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg.

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