Texting, e-mailing, Web surfing, searching, Facebooking and video watching are all increasing pursuits of mobile phone users, says the third in a series of studies. Since the first, mobile phone users have doubled their "non-voice communications."
Mobile phones in the United States are increasingly being used for
non-voice-related purposes, according to a Nov.17 Mobile Market View study by
BIA/Kelsey. The study - which took place this October and was
prefaced by similar studies in the autumns of 2008 and 2007 - found text
messaging, e-mailing and mobile Internet use to be significantly on the rise.
For example, connections over social networks, such
, were up to 16.7 percent, from 9.6 percent a year earlier.
Users who sent or received more than 10 e-mails a week jumped from 10.6 percent
in 2007 to 20 percent in 2009, and users who send or receive more than 10 text
messages per week rose from 27.2 percent in 2007, to 38.1 percent in 2008 and
48.2 percent in 2009.
Video viewing has also grown, both of purchased videos or
television segments, as well as user-generated videos.
"This third wave of our Mobile Market View study
confirms several key trends taking shape in the rapidly evolving mobile
advertising space," Steve Marshall, director or reach and consulting at
BIA/Kelsey, said in a statement on the report. "Not the least among these
trends is that mobile is quickly developing into a via platform for local
Not only are mobile users increasingly searching the
Internet for products or services in their area - a percentage that rose
from 15.6 in the fall of 2008 to 18.5 in 2009 - but local searches now
exceed out-of-area searches. While 15.9 percent of consumers used their mobile
devices to check information on movies and other entertainment, and 13.3
percent checked information on restaurants or bars, 11.1 searched for products
or services beyond their local neighborhood.
Four percent used their devices to purchase items that
needed to be shipped, and 3 percent made a purchase on the device using a
Additionally, BIA/Kelsey found developments in the mobile
marketplace to be driving mobile Internet use and advertising growth. Such
developments include growing smartphone adoption - 29 percent of
those surveyed by the firm were smartphone users, and 37 percent of all mobile
device users reported having a data plan, in addition to their monthly
subscription fee. Other contributing factors, according to the study, include
increasing numbers of mobile-optimized sites, Google's
Android operating system
, and Google's
acquisition of AdMob
"Google is clearly interested in replicating its
online dominance by positioning itself at the mobile OS level, and around the
content that users increasingly consume on smartphones," said Michael
Boland, a program director with BIA/Kelsey. "Its brand affinity among
users and one-stop-shop approach for advertisers will accelerate the shift of
dollars spent on mobile advertising in the coming months."
The firm additionally found that 25 percent of those
surveyed had canceled their landline and were exclusively using their mobiles.
And, also to the topic of brand affinity, consumers reported that while
they'd consider many brands before their next cell phone purchase, their
top prospects were BlackBerry devices from Research In Motion and Apple's