eMarketer: Smartphones Important, but Still Dramatically Trail PC Usage in Canada

Smartphone adoption increases, but PCs remain the No. 1 digital touchpoint for internet users

MAY 24, 2012 – In May 2012, Canadian telecommunications firm Rogers released the �Innovation Report: 2012 Trend Watch,� which indicated that 79% of internet users in Canada agreed with the statement �The internet allows me to connect to people and information in ways that make my life better,� and a majority also expect the internet�s role in their lives to increase over the next five years.

Smartphones, which eMarketer expects to be in the hands of more than 50% of mobile phone users in Canada in 2013, are increasingly factoring into the web�s growing influence. According to the survey conducted by market research agency Vision Critical, among internet users who owned a smartphone, 74% of respondents used their device to communicate with friends and family. Other popular smartphone activities included using maps and directions (59%), accessing social networks (52%) and playing games (50%), but these rates still lagged behind PC usage, which were at 86% for communicating with friends and family, 86% for maps and directions, 80% for connecting to social networks and 66% for playing games.

Devices Used for Online Activities by Smartphone Owners in Canada, April 2012 (% of respondents in each group)

For now, the PC remains the No. 1 digital touchpoint for internet users in Canada. However, as smartphones gain a solid majority of mobile phone users�eMarketer estimates 62% penetration in 2016�they will become a solid and competitive secondary touchpoint.

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