Users Spend Now More Time Browsing the Web on Smartphones Than Computers

The latest Nielsen study indicates that people are more likely to browse the internet on their smartphones rather than their laptop or PC. The study comes from Q4 2013, when over two thirds of mobile subscribers were already using smartphones (67%).


As the growth of smartphone usage continues, consumers are more likely to turn to them for social media and entertainment. Overall, US consumers were reporting over 34 hours in December of 2013 compared to nearly 27 hours on other devices.  UK consumers were even more likely to be on their spartphones. They spent over 41 hours on their smartphones during the same period. This growth is comparable to how often users access their phones. In the beginning of 2013, users reached for their phones approximately 5.5 times each day. By the end of the year, those incidents grew to 9 times each day.

The study also went on to look at the various apps users were accessing when turning to their smartphones. In the graphic below, social and communication apps took up a large portion of time spent on mobile devices, but 11% of users’ time also went towards productivity apps.


 Apps make up the lion’s share of time spent using smartphones, led by the growth in time spent using apps for entertainment and media. In fact, the majority of Americans’ time with apps is spent playing games (18%), accessing entertainment (15%), or using social media (29%). In Japan, nearly half of time spent on smartphones is split between those same activities, and this global trend extends to the U.K. where more than one in four minutes spent (28%) using smartphones is using social networking apps.