Mobile soon to account for 75% of global Internet usage

Mobile devices will be accounting for 75% of worldwide Internet use in 2017. That’s according to the latest Mobile Advertising Forecasts published by Zenith Media today, which is based on advertising and mobile tech data across 60 countries. The research shows that consumers are spending ever more time online with their smartphones and tablets, creating a huge opportunity for the mobile ad industry.
Mobile Internet usage growing rapidly
Overall, the proportion of mobile Internet usage has grown from 40% in 2012 to 68% this year. By 2018, it’s set to reach 79%.
Among the countries with the highest levels of mobile Internet consumption are Spain, Hong Kong and China. Zenith’s forecast suggests that mobile in Spain will account for 85% of Internet use this year, followed by Hong Kong at 79% and China at 76%. The US rank fourth (74%) with Italy and India tying for fifth spot at 73%.
Whilst smartphone penetration is driving the majority of mobile Internet usage, having reached 56% this year, tablets are still more of a luxury item expected to generate 18% of penetration by 2018.
Interestingly, the data suggests that Ireland may have the highest smartphone penetration at 92%, followed by Singapore (91%) and Spain (88%).
With the rapid uptake of mobile devices across the world, mobile advertising spend is set to jump ahead of desktop by 2017 at a global Internet ad share of 52%. That’s an increase of 8% from 2015. By 2018, mobile ads are likely to account for 60% of total Internet advertising with ad expenditure of $134bn – more than newspaper, magazine, cinema and outdoor advertising together.
The research strongly signals that it’s time for marketers to focus on mobile-first strategies and cater their campaigns for mobile screens and formats. In addition, advertisers need to re-discover their audiences to find out how mobile devices are being used across the day. Cross-screen advertising is already a big thing. In addition, it’s good practice to include all mobile devices such as smartwatches and other activity trackers when planning a campaign.

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