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Mobile Social Network Usage Catches Fire in France

As the post-election fervor winds down, social networks remain at the forefront in France

In April 2012, eMarketer reported that France trailed the rest of the EU-5 (Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK) in microblog usage, but growth accelerated as politicians sought out voters on social media during a tight presidential race. The race is over, but eMarketer estimates that the popularity of social networking, especially via mobile devices, will continue to blaze through the country.

eMarketer expects social networks to attract 21.9 million users in France in 2012, increasing to 23.6 million in 2013. While the total number of social network users in the country is impressive, the number of social network users accessing via mobile phones is even more noteworthy. This year, the number of mobile social users will grow 53.8% to 7.5 million and next year account for nearly half (11.3 million) of total social network users.

By 2014, nearly a quarter of the population of France will access a social network via a mobile phone. eMarketer estimates that by that year, in the EU-5, only the UK will surpass France in the percentage of the population accessing social networks on mobile. While internet users in France are comparatively unenthusiastic about social networking on their PCs, the convenience of mobile access is driving strong numbers to social sites.

”Several factors are contributing to the boom in mobile social networking in France,” noted Karin von Abrams, eMarketer senior analyst. “One is the rising penetration of smartphones. eMarketer estimates that one-third of all mobile phone users in France will have a smartphone in 2012. In addition, major social networks such as Facebook have made a big effort to optimize their sites for mobile access. Also, smartphone ownership is highest among the demographic segments most involved in social networking, such as college students and young professionals ages 25 to 44.”

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Check out today’s other articles, “Mobile Phone Shoppers Show Growing Preference for Text Marketing” and “TV Viewers Carry the Conversation to Social Networks.”

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