5 Surprising mobile stats that show just how important mobile is


By Jade Brennan, Digital Content Specialist

Africa isn’t just mobile first, in most parts it is mobile only. More people have access to mobile phones than they do to basic services.

1. Worldwide, more people will have mobile phones (5,4bn) than electricity (5,3bn), running water (3,5bn) and cars (2,8bn) by 2020, according to the Cisco Visual Networking Index: Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update, 2016 – 2021.The internet has become so entrenched in our lives that the UN declared online freedom a basic human right last year.

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2. Mobile browsing now accounts for half of the world’s web traffic, a 30% YoY increase. While desktop traffic is still important, mobile is fast becoming the norm. And this shift to mobile is also changing user behaviour. Users are reading less and watching video instead.

3. More than 75% of the world’s mobile data traffic will be video by 2021. In South Africa, video will make up 73% of mobile data traffic by 2020, compared to 52% at the end of 2015.

Video is important because it tells a story much faster and is more engaging than any other medium. Facebook recently introduced pre-roll ads for videos and is constantly updating its mobile ad offerings.

4. 81% of all Facebook advertising revenue comes from mobile ads and over 1bn people are mobile-only active users on the platform. It’s important to find ways to monetize on mobile. Whether this be through mobile ads that aren’t intrusive, native or sponsored content.

5. The average user touches their phone 2617 times a day,  and millennials check their phone 157 times a day. A smartphone is always on and always with the user. This provides a multitude of opportunities for marketers and advertisers to connect with potential consumers. These micro moments are key to connecting with users in an increasingly mobile world.