Wealthy Asians use phones to blog, take photos: study

Thu Oct 16, 2008 3:46am EDT
 
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SINGAPORE (Reuters) - For wealthy Asians, mobile phones and Blackberrys are much more than a way to stay in touch, with a survey finding portable communication devices increasingly being used to watch videos, take pictures and surf the Web.

The Synovate-Pax regional survey of nearly 10,000 respondents across seven countries in Asia showed 56 percent of affluent Asians use their mobile devices every week to take pictures, while more than 30 percent watched video clips.

"Mobility has become the new creed of Asian elites and they are using the 'third screen' -- screens on mobile phones, PDAs, MP4s and other personal portable devices -- for connectivity, information and entertainment," Clare Lui, research director at market intelligence firm Synovate, said in a statement.

She said the high ownership figures of such devices showed affluent Asians were constantly on the move and had gone beyond the need to just stay connected.

Taiwanese lead the way when it comes to seeking news and information, as well as chatting and instant messaging on the go. Wealthy Koreans turned out to be the biggest sports fans, with more than half using their mobile devices to receive results.

Thais were the most likely to watch live TV on their mobile devices, followed by Taiwanese, Koreans and Singaporeans. Some Asians also used these devices to blog or make Web movies.

The Synovate-PAX study tracked media and digital consumption, prosperity and influence across 11 Asia-Pacific markets -- Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Indonesia, Japan, Australia, India and the Philippines.

It was conducted in 2007 and 2008 and respondents had Internet usage of 60 minutes or above in an average week.

(Writing by Miral Fahmy; Editing by Paul Tait)