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Mobile users want more interactive social networking experience on the move

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Research published by messaging firm, Colibria has revealed that mobile users want social networking services pushed straight to their mobile, making the experience more interactive and allowing them to communicate with all of their social networks from one single access point.

The survey of 2,000 online respondents in then UK found that 39% of 18-45 year olds believe that if updates were pushed directly to their device, it would greatly improve their experience of social networks via mobile.

Assessing social networking usage across consumers in the UK, the survey highlighted key differentiators that subscribers feel are needed to make these services for mobile accessible. Currently, of those who do already access their social networks via their phone, 65% prefer to do it through a device's internet browser, whilst 28% use a dedicated application. The interactivity limitations of browser based access may explain why 43% of users only describe their experience as average, with a further 20% rating access as poor or very poor.

Additional key findings have highlighted that there are a number of potential challenges facing mobile operators looking to deploy social networking solutions:

  • Almost one third (31%) said that messages are what they would most like to receive on their mobile when checking their social networks
  • Single log-in access across multiple social networks is the most popular option for improving the experience via mobile (14%)
  • Only 16% of those asked used social networks excluding MySpace and Facebook
  • 78% use the instant messaging functionality available on their respective social networking sites

As the popularity of social networking services continues to grow, operators looking to tap into potential new revenue streams will be interested to hear that currently only 21% of 18-45 year olds signed up with a fixed social network access their service over their mobile; meaning there is a huge untapped market for operators to target. With recent predictions from Informa stating that global revenues from mobile social networking will be between $29b and $52b by 2012, mobile social networking appears set to grow in 2009.

Lars Kristian Roland, CTO of Colibria, commented, "This survey shows that mobile users want to be able to enjoy a seamless, consistent, rich experience across all of their social networks on the mobile. Put simply, a truly interactive experience is required from operators for the mass adoption of social networking on mobile to become a reality and mirror the success of the fixed world."

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Tags: social networking  ict  instant messaging  colibria  option  UK