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Young Asians are inseparable from their mobiles: Synovate

Global market research firm Synovate last week released the findings of its latest Young Asians survey. According to the report, young Asians’ personal ownership of mobiles has increased from 60 percent in 2008 to 64 percent in 2010. In Hong Kong, the figure jumped from 82 to 87 percent, while in Singapore, it went from 80 to 85 percent.

The survey looked at the lifestyle, product ownership, media consumption and leisure habits of people aged 8 to 24 across 11 markets in Asia, covering China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. A total of 12,302 young people were interviewed in person or online during the second quarter of 2010.

According to the study, young Asians still value talking on their phone as an important way of staying in touch with family and friends.

Listening to music, playing games and taking photos are some of the other things young people turn to their mobile for, with around half of young mobile owners making use of these functions on their phone. One in five also uses the device to record video.

Twenty percent of youth surveyed across Asia use their mobile to surf the internet, 17 percent engage in instant messaging, and 15 percent visit and update their profile on social- networking sites.

The survey also indicates untapped opportunities for mobile marketing, as one in three young Hong Kongers indicated they do not mind receiving or responding to ads on their phone in return for being paid or incentivised.

"[Young people] in Asia are looking to receive the latest information to wow their peers, so reaching them through mobile is the most immediate way to gain their attention," said Steve Garton, executive director of Media Research for Synovate.

Twenty-four percent of mobile owners indicated they would like to receive more ads on their phone even without incentives, a figure that is similar to the regional average, showing young consumers’ willingness to receive information through this medium.