Mobile phone usage report 2011: The things you do

GSMArena team, 02 May 2011.

Tags: Misc

Weight-tracking

Weight tracking may as well be one of the least popular features of mobile phones, but with 40% of all cell phone owners using to it at least occasionally it’s not as uncommon as presumed. To be honest, we didn’t think so many people were so conscious about their weight.

Women use this feature the most but weight-watching is quite popular in Asia too.

There’s also a notable trend with older people (over 41 years of age), who don’t seem to go anywhere near the average usage.



Viewing and editing office documents

Cell phones are becoming increasingly good at handling office documents and we have the numbers to prove it – 16.6% of all people browser or edit such files on their handsets every day. Another 58% only need the feature once a week or more rarely but will miss the feature if it was to be removed from their handsets. There’s also an extra 8% that would be interested in getting document handling enabled on their mobile phones.

To confirm what we all thought, women and teens tend to use document viewing/editing on their phones the least. Interestingly though, both groups have the highest percentage of “Would if I could” answers – maybe they just don’t find cell phones comfortable enough for the task.

Users above 50 are only slightly more active than teenagers here and theirs is the highest number of people who are completely uninterested in the feature. People aged 41-50 on the other hand are the biggest fans of mobile office apps.

We should also note that Europeans view or edit documents on a daily basis almost half as much as Asians.



eBooks

We’ve got to be honest here – even high-end smartphones don’t make too great eBook readers. We are even a bit skeptical about tablets but that’s not an argument to go into now.

What matters here is that eBooks are only used by 9.8% of all users on a daily basis. Usage peeks with ages 18-24, while the other age groups are hovering around the average.

And we are seeing yet another feature that’s twice more popular in Asia than in Europe.



Magazines and newspapers

Magazines and newspapers tend to be better suited to cell phones than eBooks – staring into tiny LCD screens isn’t as tiring for shorter reads. That would explain the extra 7% of daily users, mostly at the expense of the “Never” column.

They also have a different usage pattern in terms of age – people over 50 do double the newspaper and magazine reading the teenagers do.

Women also seem less interested than men, the feature is most popular in Asia.



Mobile internet usage

As mentioned earlier, this is one of the most telling signs that more geeks took the poll than Average Joes. Over 90% of the respondents are avid mobile internet users with over 71% using it daily. Mobile internet has been steadily on the rise, but our dear readers are a few steps ahead of the natural evolutionary curve.

Teenagers are the only ones to score well below average here and we suspect it’s the related cost that holds them back.

Oceania has embraced carrier-provided internet whole-heartedly – over 82% of them use it every day.



Tethering

Providing internet connection to another device is high on the priority list of most manufacturers these days. The only thing is smartphones are evolving so quickly it makes little sense to use them as a simple modem – most of the web browsing tasks could be handled (and, judging by this poll, already are) on the handset itself.

Still, tethering is relatively popular even if most of the people tend to only use it on occasion.

All groups up to 32 years of age use tethering about the same while after that there’s a notable decline (41-50 year olds do tethering the least).

Despite having no specific carrier-enforced restrictions Europeans are the single group with the least interest in tethering, while users in Oceania are all for it.



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