BBC World News Global Study Sees Surge in Smartphone Use for Consuming News

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Note -- this news article is more than a year old.

The number of people who prefer to read the news on a mobile device has continued to rise, with nearly 40% reading the news on a mobile phone at least once an hour.

According to the global news division of the UK based BBC, there has also been a 15 percent yearly increase in the amount of people who would prefer to use a phone to read the news, against a 17 percent decline for desktop computers. Tablet use is also up, by 9 percent. 

However, the survey also claims that mobile advertising four times more effective than desktop, even though that is clearly not being reflected in the rates being paid by advertisers.

The study surveyed 6,000 smartphone owners in Australia, Germany, Sweden, India, Hong Kong and the USA. It compared the habits of affluent consumers - the highest 20 percent income earners in each country - to those of the general population.

The survey emphasises the growing trend for news consumption on mobile platforms and reflects the results of the BBC's 2012 study of news consumption in which 59 percent of affluent consumers expected to consume more news on their phones over the next five years.

Additionally, the previous survey found that news consumption on mobiles was mainly restricted to scanning news headlines. In comparison, 34 percent of new handset users surveyed in the new study say they now dive deeper when consuming news and are likely to read additional articles connected the original piece. This is 42 percent higher than for those using older handsets. Owners of the latest handsets are also 10 percent more likely than the general population to watch news video or stream content on their mobile phones.

Jim Egan, CEO of BBC Global News said: "This new research reveals significant change in mobile consumption - people are delving deeper into stories on their mobiles, consuming more video and, significantly, growing accustomed to advertising on their mobiles. This large study provides compelling evidence that mobile advertising works with affluent mobile consumers in particular and that has big implications for publishers and advertisers alike."

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