Browsing, social media use and ecommerce all more likely performed on computers
While mobile internet usage in Canada lags behind that in the US, eMarketer estimates 32% of Canada’s population will have the ability to access the web on a smart device by year’s end. For its August 2012 “Innovation Report 2012 Trend Watch” report, Canadian telecommunications firm Rogers in July 2012 surveyed residents ages 18 to 24 and the parents of those in that group to get a sense of how the two generations were using mobile technology.
Rogers found that respondents were less likely to use web capabilities on smart devices compared to those on a PC. While 94% of computer owners used their device to browse the web, only 67% of smart device owners did went online using their tablet or phone. The story was similar for social network use, with 77% of those polled connecting to networks on a PC, and 61% using their smartphone or tablet for the same purpose. The gap was widest for online shopping, with 70% of respondents using PCs and only 12% using a smart device to conduct commerce.
In Canada, smartphones clearly have a ways to go before displacing PCs as the preferred means of gaining internet access, but they are steadily creeping into the market. eMarketer estimates there will be 10.5 million smartphone users in Canada by the end of 2012, with that figure growing to 16.4 million by 2016.
In terms of smartphone preference, respondents were partial to iPhones, which had a market share of 35%. Apple’s close attention to design might be to thank for that—respondents to Rogers’ survey named ease of use as the most important factor they considered in using a smartphone. Android devices, meanwhile, held 29% of users, and BlackBerry devices—made by Canada’s own Research in Motion—had a 27% share.
Tablet ownership in Canada mirrored the worldwide trend, with Apple’s iPad holding a dominant market share (64%). But unlike in other countries, BlackBerry laid claim to a relatively respectable 16% of tablet users, trailed by Samsung at 7%. But outside of Canada, BlackBerry’s presence is largely negligible, and even in Canada its user base is dropping rapidly.
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