Throughout this week, our Charts of the Day have been drawing on data from our Mobile Pilot – conducted among 85,000 internet users aged 16-64 – to look at some of the characteristics of Mobile-Only Users.So far, we’ve seen that these users – who do not own or use any connected devices other than their smartphone/feature phone – are more likely to be young, to come from emerging markets, to live in rural areas and to be from lower socio-economic groups.

Such a profile helps to explain why mobiles have become their only access point, but across the 34 different countries where we conducted our pilot research there are also some important differences to note.

Age is the most obvious example of this; broadly speaking, the lower a country’s overall internet penetration rate, the higher the proportion of 16-24s we find in its Mobile-Only audience. In Indonesia, where the World Bank estimates internet penetration at sub-25%, 6 in 10 Mobile-Only users are from the youngest age group. In Saudi Arabia (World Bank estimate at 70% internet penetration), only 3 in 10 Mobile-Only users are from the 16-24 group. And, at the bottom of the table, it’s some of the countries with the highest internet penetration rates of all like Canada, Japan and the UAE which have the lowest percentages of 16-24s in their Mobile-Only groups.

As with any other audience, this data underlines how the demographics, characteristics and attitudes of a seemingly homogenous target group can vary between markets – making it essential to profile them at a granular level. We look forward to giving our clients the chance to do this for Mobile-Only Users from Q1 2017 onwards, when mobile surveying launches in our existing 36 markets, as well as in Ghana, Morocco, Nigeria and Kenya.

For more information about this data, clients can download our new infographic on the subject here.


Written by

Jason is Chief Research Officer at GWI. He's the main man who leads our global team of analysts, delivering world-renowned research. He's an in-demand data junkie who you might see popping up on your telly screens every so often to show you what's actually happening in the lives of consumers.

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