Mobility Trends: Smartphones drive mobile data traffic

Posted by media on July 28, 2015 at 12:30 PM


Not too long ago, the emergence of the Internet and the increasingly important role of mobile devices1 in all areas of our personal and professional lives was a hot topic.

Today, no one doubts of the importance of having Internet access to perform any activity, and it’s already a fact that smartphones are making strides in becoming the main portal to access the Internet.

This post is also available in Spanish.

Currently, there are 2,600 million smartphones in the world, and it is estimated that by 2020 that figure will rise to 6,100 million terminals. Once we reach that  level, 70% of the population will have one of these devices, and 80% of mobile data traffic will be from smartphones.

Chinese and US markets

A look at the Chinese and US markets provides an advanced view of how far smartphones have infiltrated the market and are changing the way we access the Internet.

In China, from the 420 million people accessing the Internet via their mobile phones, 380 are doing so with smartphones. The Asian giant is indeed one of the first countries where mobile access to the Internet exceeds the access through desktops or laptops. This fact is a clear indication that in the Asian market, the natural gateway for consumers and businesses is a screen between 4 and 7 inches.

The United States follows a similar path: two thirds of the population have a smartphone, a figure that doubles the indicator from 2011. It is also estimated that 1 in 5 Americans access the Internet through an intelligent terminal, and that for young people between 18 to 19 years that is the only way they access the Web. 

Spain, the European leader in smartphone usage

While the reference to those two countries is very valuable to determine what the natural evolution in the use of smartphones is to access the Internet, Spain also presents an interesting case study.

Spain leads the penetration of these devices in Europe, since four out of five mobile phones are smartphones. In addition, of the 26 million Spaniards who regularly access the Internet, 91.8% do so through their mobile phone, and for 23.4% of the population it is also the path used to access products and services online. In fact, 2014 was the first year in which access to digital media from mobile devices surpassed that made by traditional computers.

More Internet access, but also to performing more actions

The figures of smartphone penetration are incontestable, and they suggest that smart devices will become increasingly the principal and in many cases, the only way to access the Internet for a broad demographic group. But beyond this fact, it is just as important the online activity performed through these devices.

In this sense, looking again to the US numbers in 2014:

  • 57% of smartphone users accessed online banking
  • 44% searched in real estate portals
  • 43% sought information or participated in recruitment processes

Clearly, the use of the Internet via smartphones is becoming less recreational, and its use grows to cover a series of transactions - job searches, purchases of goods and services, negotiations with banks, etc. - actions that people preferred to perform through their laptop or desktop computer not far ago.

Many of these transactions require signing documents and therefore, the electronic signature solutions whose interface is not compatible with smartphones will become obsolete in a very short time.

At Signaturit, our leading electronic signature solution was conceived from the beginning as a multi platform solution: requesting a signature or signing a document is just as easy when performed via smartphone, PC or tablet.

If you want to know more about our eSignature solution, simply download the whitepaper below. In case you would like see firsthand our platform’s ease of use through your smartphone right now,  you can  try Signaturit for free.

This post is also available in Spanish.

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1. Smartphone, Tablet, Laptop, M2M and other portable devices (Wearables, USBs and connect cards).
2. Data from this post is based on the latest annual Mobility Report from Ericsson (2015).

Topics: Digital Transformation

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