UK Smartphone use breaks 50% barrier.

Nick CockburnManaging Director

More than half of people in the UK will own a smartphone by the end of this year for the first time, according to research from ZenithOptimedia.

Their report covers smartphone use in 47 countries and discovered the number of people owing a smartphone rose from 42%  in 2013 to 49.5% last year.  This number is set to reach 55.7 per cent by the end of 2015 and 66.5 per cent by the end of 2018.

Smartphone penetration in the UK is expected to be 69% by 2018. This will make the UK the 25th highest country in the world in terms of the proportion of people owning these devices.

Smartphone ownership is highest in Asia-Pacific and western Europe. Singapore takes the top spot with 89.0 per cent.

It is predicted that over 97% of Singapore residents will own a smartphone by 2018. The Singapore government is striving for universal Wi-Fi access. Spain & Ireland came 2nd and 3rd, with 86.7% and 83.0% respectively.

Meanwhile, across the 47 countries analysed, tablet usage rose from 5.3% in 2012 to 14.8% in 2014. It is forecast to reach 19.8% in 2018. Tablet adoption is the strongest in Hong Kong with 77% in 2015. This is anticipated to increase to a staggering 91% in 2018!

By the end of 2015, 51 per cent of people in the UK will have access to a tablet, up from 40 per cent at the end of last year. The UK will have the seventh-highest tablet penetration at the end of this year; it is expected to climb to sixth by 2018 with 65 per cent penetration.

The report also advises that the growth of global web users is slowing. The annual rate of growth has fallen from 7.9% in 2011 to a predicted  2.5% in 2018.

The UK will have 57.7 million internet users by the end of this year which is up 1.8% on last year.

The spread of mobile tech is transforming our media consumption and marketing comms across the globe. The smartphone/tablet is now the first port of call for information and entertainment. To communicate with consumers Marketing must adopt mobile-first approaches now more than ever before.


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