India: Future of Digital Interaction Is Mobile [Statistics]

Social and mobile are gaining momentum in India, the world’s third largest Internet population (137 million) with almost one billion mobile subscriptions. Marketers are advised to take a mobile approach to connect with consumers in the country, said We Are Social exec Simon Kemp.

The Singapore-based social media agency has published its November report for India, which is an annual edition in its second year.

A key finding from the report is that the future of digital interaction in India is mobile-based. This means marketers need to understand how they can add meaningful audience value on smaller screens to people with lower bandwidth, Kemp, managing director at We Are Social noted.

“Marketers need to explore different kinds of content (not just large video files) that are tailored for ‘out-and-about’ usage occasions, and that are not driven by an interruptive model that will only frustrate audiences,” he said.

In India, there are 50 million mobile Internet users, which is proportionate to the size of South Korea.

While most people in India still use feature phones, the number of smartphone users has increased to 27 million this year. However, smartphone penetration is still less than 3 percent in the country.

When it comes to how men and women use smartphones, Indian men spend 50 percent more time browsing the Internet than women. While women spend 150 percent more time using instant messaging on their smartphones than men do.

And mobile is proving to be lucrative as the Times of India reported that youths in the country would spend more than US$9 billion on mobile Internet activities this year.

(Source: we are social)

Meanwhile, Internet use on mobile has already surpassed desktop at 52 percent.

Social Trends in India

Google and Facebook combined account for 60 percent of India’s online ad market.

No doubt, social networking is the primary driver of online activity in the country although social media penetration is only 5 percent.

Other social related stats include:

  • India added close to 14.8 million Facebook users in the past six months, with 30 percent of new signups to the social network from mobile devices in the country.
  • Even then, only 5 percent of the Indian population is on Facebook but it already has the third largest Facebook population in the world.
  • On Facebook, local brands are growing their fan bases faster than the top global brands. The top three local brands include Tata Docomo, Vodafone Zoozoos, and Kingfisher, according to Socialbakers.
  • 50 percent of India’s netizens use social media to inform online purchase decisions.
  • 33 million Indian netizens use more than one social network.

Other social networks include:

Twitter: 15 million users

LinkedIn: 15.4 million members (India has the second highest LinkedIn population in the world, after the U.S.)

YouTube: 55.8 million unique visitors in July. (Indian netizens view more than four billion videos on YouTube each month with 25 percent of these views from mobile devices.) Rajshri, which broadcasts Hindi entertainment videos, is India’s most popular YouTube channel that gets close to 1.2 billion views.

Google+: Estimated at 50 million as 14 percent of all G+ users are from India. Bangalore (known to be the Silicon Valley of India) is reported to have more G+ users than any city in the world.

Tumblr: 1.5 million monthly users.

India’s Internet, social and mobile users at a glance:

We Are Social’s study on Social, Digital, and Mobile in India gathered information from numerous sources such as comScore, Nielsen, and Quantcast among others to collate statistics aimed at marketing professionals. The full report can be accessed here.

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