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Majority of Saudis watch videos on smartphones, tablets – study

Majority of Saudis watch videos on smartphones, tablets – study

New survey finds over 66 per cent of Saudi consumers use the internet throughout the day

Smartphone and internet usage in Saudi Arabia is booming with most users preferring to consume video content on their devices, a new survey by Ericsson has found.

The study found that 62 per cent of the time spent watching videos by Saudi consumers is on smartphones and tablets. That compares with 40 per cent in the United States.

Up to 43 per cent of smartphone users in the 16–29 age group also watch on-demand video weekly.

However, only 57 per cent are satisfied with online video streaming facilities, compared to the 88 per cent who are satisfied with instant messaging and chat services.

The study also found that 66 per cent of the respondents use the internet constantly throughout the day while another 54 per cent say that the internet is their main source of news and entertainment.

Among smartphone users in the kingdom, there has been a 17 per cent growth in the usage of 4G connections in the last two years.

Consumers also have a strong interest in new and future services like multi-screening, connected cars and connected homes, the study found.

Head of Ericsson in Saudi Arabia Ali Eid said: “The fact is that consumers in Saudi Arabia are increasingly mobile, video driven, to the extent that their connectivity and mobility is surpassing many other countries, which is truly exciting.

“One of the key points highlighted by this report is that consumer expectations from mobile services are increasingly evolving over time. In order to meet the expectations, there is a challenge for operators to improve service quality with reliable and faster mobile broadband and better customer support.”

The number of mobile phone users in Saudi Arabia is projected to grow from an estimated 20.2 million in 2015 to 23.3 million in 2019, according to eMarketer research.

Meanwhile smartphone users in the kingdom are also expected to increase from around 14.7 million last year to roughly 19.1 million in 2019, a Statista report estimates.

The eMarketer report stated that two segments of the population are driving smartphone usage – consumers trading up from more basic feature phones, and new subscribers — particularly younger, affluent individuals — entering the market.

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