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Smartphones Key to UK Internet Users' Time Spent Online

Females and young millennials the most likely to spend majority of time online via advanced handset

UK female internet users spend over 50% of their time online via their smartphones, according to a comScore MMX Multi-Platform survey conducted in December 2016. Though both male and female internet users spend more time on smartphones than any other device, there are differences in how each gender—and age group—spends time online overall.

Share of Time Spent Online Among UK Internet Users, by Demographic and Device, Dec 2016 (% of total in each group)

Male internet users spend less of their internet time on smartphones than females—39%—but outpace them for desktop/laptop time spent share by 11 percentage points. Neither gender spends even a fifth of their online time on tablets.

Perhaps predictably, younger UK internet users spend more of their time online via smartphones than any other device. The leading group by that measure—respondents ages 18 to 24—spent 65% of their online time on a smartphone, as did more than half of those ages 25 to 34 and 35 to 44.

Conversely, smartphones accounted for just 31% of online time spent among internet users ages 55 and older. This most-senior group was also the only cohort to spend more of its online time on a PC than via smartphone.

Overall, UK internet users spend half of their online time online via smartphones—and nearly two-thirds via mobile devices, if tablets are factored in—which means advertisers and marketers would do well to optimize their digital campaigns to suit mobile experiences.

—Ben Clague

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