Thursday, May 14, 2015

Digital Lifestyle in the PHL

Digital Lifestyle in the PHL
According to the Asia Digital Marketing Association (ADMA) and the Internet World statistics, there are over a billion Internet users in the AsiaPacific region, which amounts to over 46 percent of the total Internet users in the world.

The Philippines, specifically has over 44.2 million users, the second highest ranking in Southeast Asia and the 6th in the whole of Asia. The population is forecasted to double by 2016, according to Julian Persaud, former Google Managing Director in Southeast Asia.

The January 2015 "Digital In the Philippines" snapshot of We Are Social counts that among the total Philippine population of 100.8 million (with urbanization at 49 percent), there are 44.2 million active Internet users. Of these 44.2 million Internet users, 90 percent have active social media accounts.

In the last four years, Internet access in the Philippines has grown by 500%, the fastest rate in Southeast Asia, but as mentioned in previously, real growth is yet to come but it's coming by fast.

Leading in numbers
While we're yet to see the majority of the Philippine population online, enough data supports how addicted the Philippines is to the digital life. According to We Are Social's Digital Report as of January 2015, the Philippines leads in average "Time Spent on the Internet" through laptop and desktop, and one of the highest via mobile worldwide.

From a global average of 4.4 hours/day, the Filipino spends an average of 6.3 hours/day online via laptop and 3.3 hours/day via mobile.

Over 40 percent of Filipinos own an active social media account, according to the same study. This is larger than that of most technologically advanced countries like South Korea and Japan, whose social media penetration amounts to 30 percent and 19 percent respectively.

Capturing social media and smartphone penetration The Philippines was once called the "Selfie Capital of the World" as analyzed by TIME through geographic coordinates with 258 selfie-takers per 100,000 people on Instagram.

Apart from the photo app, the country also leads in social media penetration particularly on Facebook with over 94 percent of its Internet users using the popular social network, 40 percent more than users the United States. The Philippines also records the highest figure of total screen time spent in social networking with an astounding 42 percent.

In a survey conducted by On Device Research mid June 2014, smartphone penetration in the Philippines is growing faster than Indonesia and Vietnam combined. What drives the growth of smartphone penetration is the influx of low priced local smartphone brands such as the Android powered Cherry Mobile, Starmobile, and myPhone, all priced in the US$ 50 - US$250 range.

Similarly, Asian phone brands Huawei, Oppo, and Xiaomi have also landed in the Philippines in an aggressive effort to earn double digit market share by the end of the year.

Correlation to the thriving economy and the young population
The strong digital lifestyle of the Filipinos is testament also to the equally strong economy of the country. Despite suffering the worst natural disasters ever recorded, GDP growth rates continue to be in its favor. As the country is cited as "Southeast Asia's Strong Man" and with a 33% annual growth in number of active mobile social accounts, it is good to see whether the Philippines is fit to for the title "Digital Lifestyle Capital of the World".

In a report done in 2014 by Tigercub Digital titled "The Perfect Digital Storm: Philippines", the boost in digital today owes much of its intensity to the "perfect digital storm of increased digital engagement, strong economic growth, and favorable (young and dynamic) demographics".

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