PH leads smartphone, tablet ownership in SE Asia emerging markets

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[/caption] In the report, smartphone penetration in the country is expected to increase from 29 percent to 35 percent by the end of the year, while tablet penetration is expected to increase from 6 percent to 13 percent by the end of the year based on the consumers expressed interest. ?Internet surfing, access to latest features, and gaming are key drivers for tablet purchases, whereas the key motivating factors for smartphone users are to upgrade devices, gain Internet connectivity and mobility,? said Afrizal Abdul Rahim, head of ConsumerLab South East Asia & Oceania, during a press briefing in Makati on Friday, Sept. 28. Filipino respondents to the survey indicated that voice calls and SMS continue to be important among current smartphone users. However, Internet browsing, social networking, and instant messaging are also key drivers for current smartphone use and are expected to continue to grow. Looking at the usage that is driving growth in mobile data, the most popular mobile applications used by Filipinos are those related to gaming, followed by TV/video and entertainment. With regard to applications, the study found that the Philippines lags behind other markets in terms of app usage, but that the frequency of use is expected to increase in line with smartphone ownership and mobile data usage in the future. ?We also foresee that mobile consumers will likely show great interest in apps related to shopping, followed by weather tracking, video, and TV shows,? Afrizal shared. The interest in these applications indicates that Filipinos value shopping and entertainment, and also place high importance in keeping track of local weather conditions, perhaps because of the country?s annual monsoon season. Afrizal revealed that prepaid mobile plans are still expected to drive smartphone usage in the Philippines. ?Given the value-conscious nature of the prepaid segment, data services on smartphones are best offered as small packages. The key to success in a low-ARPU, prepaid environment is to offer smartphone customers with diverse data packages that are highly relevant to the subscribers, at the same time offering them a strong sense of cost control. Customer segmentation and partnerships with content providers will be important to facilitate data uptake.? Elie Hanna, president and country manager of Ericsson Philippines, also said the findings strongly suggest that future growth will primarily be driven by mobile data. ?Operators will need to ensure that their networks are smartphone-optimized, and are capable of delivering superior coverage, speeds and reliability. We will continue to work with them to ensure that they are ready to handle continued mobile data growth,? he said. Asked if the recent rollout of LTE technology by mobile operators would further drive the growth of mobile applications, Hanna said this will certainly happen if LTE devices become widely available soon. Ericsson ConsumerLab undertook analysis of a face-to-face study of 500 Philippines urban residents aged 16-60. This was part of a survey of 58 countries covering a total of 47,577 people carried out by consumer research firm TNS.]]>

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