Ofcom: U.K. Internet Users Prefer Smartphones Over Laptops

Ofcom: U.K. Internet Users Prefer Smartphones Over Laptops
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A new survey shows more internet users in the United Kingdom prefer to access the web on their smartphones. Thirty-three percent of internet users said their smartphone is the most important online device, compared to 30% of users who prefer laptops. The survey also displayed a shift from last year’s survey, which showed that 22% of users preferred their smartphone. The results come from Ofcom’s 2015 Communications Market Report, which disclosed details on U.K. internet users and their habits.

U.K. smartphone users spend two hours a day online

Sixty-six percent of people surveyed in the United Kingdom own a smartphone, and many use their phones at least two hours a day. One major reason people prefer to use their phones to access the internet is the rise of faster networks like 4G/LTE. Last year, 4G subscriptions climbed from 2.7 million to 23.6 million.

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The vast majority of smartphone users are young adults, but middle-aged users are catching up. The report shows 50% of British consumers aged 55 to 64 now own a smartphone, a rise from 19% in 2012. Compared to their older cohorts, young people are far more connected to their phones, with 59% of young adults aged 18 to 24 said they would miss their smartphone if it was taken away, although 57% of people 55 and over would miss their television sets more.

Ofcom survey shows what phone users do on the internet

Ofcom’s survey also indicates that 81% of internet users still use email as their primary method for communication, but 42% of users like to send photos or videos through text messages. Also 18% use their smartphones to conduct video calls on the net. Ofcom also estimated that 1.2 billion selfies were taken in the United Kingdom last year. The study showed that one in ten internet users admitted to taking at least one selfie a week.

Many internet users take frequent selfies, but not everyone is saving their photos. Only 31% of those surveyed admit to backing up their photos, but younger people are more likely to save their photos with a backup.



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