With more than 1.5 billion people across Asia-Pacific now using social media on a monthly basis at the end of 2016, the region has been found to be the most Internet data hungry.
According to a report from social media management platform Hootsuite and social media agency We Are Social, APAC’s mobile data traffic leads significantly over other regions, with 4.12 billion gigabytes consumed in the last year, compared with 1.24 billion gigabytes from North Europe, Middle East, and Africa.
As a whole, global internet penetration increased by 10% in the last 12 months to hit 3.773 billion, or 50% of the world’s population. Meanwhile, global social media usage increased by 21%, reaching 2.8 billion users worldwide, it said.
Another finding is that mobile social media use increased by 30% year-over-year to surpass 2.5 billion users globally, with 91% of social media users accessing social from mobile.
This compares to APAC regional growth, with 95% of consumers in the market choosing to access social media via mobile devices – the highest ratio in the world, said the report.
The findings highlight just how important it is for brands and retailers to increase their digital engagement and real-time interaction with customers, both specific to Asia via localised tech firms such as WeChat, and across the globe via Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat.
“Half of the world’s population is now online, which is a testament to the speed with which digital connectivity is helping to improve people’s lives,” said We Are Social’s Simon Kemp.
“Given this latest data, it’s probably time for us to stop referring to social as ‘new media’, and integrate it more seamlessly into our day-to-day activities.”