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We’ve seen clear indications of mobile web use spiking in all of Latin America through very clear market indicators. These include robust rates of smartphone/tablet adoption and gigantic upticks in mobile broadband subscriptions in Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, Colombia and several other markets.
However, for anyone considering increasing their mobile advertising campaigns in Latin America—or even trying out a mobile media campaign for the first time—understanding mobile usage patterns is key.
A recent large study from Accenture seems to offer some interesting data points about mobile Internet users around the world. The firm surveyed more than 17,000 people in 13 countries, including France, Germany, Austria, South Africa, Spain, Finland, Italy Russia, the United Kingdom and also Brazil and Mexico.
#1 Android Rules
For 90% of the mobile Internet users in Mexico and Brazil that were surveyed, the operating system is the most important thing to consider when purchasing a smartphone. Out of all respondents from all countries, 41% prefer Android, 22% prefer iOS and only 8% prefer Blackberry.
These Accenture results are consistent with Brazil results from Nielsen Brasil published in August 2012, in which 78% of the smartphones sold in Brazil in June 2012 used the Android operating system. However, it’s important to note that comScore’s Device Essentials study from March 2012 reported that 58% of the mobile Internet traffic in Brazil came from devices using the iOS system.
But wait—there’s more. In September 2012 Kantar Worldpanel reported that for June to September 2012, Android had a 47% market share in Brazil in terms of the operating systems of smartphones sold in that period, making it the leader over iOS, which only had 6%; Symbian was in second place with 26.7%. For Mexico, Kantar Worldpanel reports 37% share for Android, 29.7% for Research in Motion (the leader last year), 4.7% for iOS and 20.2% for Symbian.
As such, if you are targeting by operating system in these markets, it seems that Android will deliver the largest amount of mobile phone users in both Brazil and Mexico.
#2 Mexicans and Brazilians Go Social with Their Mobile Phones
More than 80% of Mexican mobile phone owners surveyed say they use their phones to send messages on social media, as well as to blog, tweet and send instant messages. Among the Brazilian mobile phone owners, 73% reported doing these activities with their phones.
#3 They’re Hooked on Internet-Ready Phones
Given this high rate of online activities with their phones, it’s not a surprise that 78% of the Brazilians and 61% of the Mexicans said that the cell phones they buy in the future will offer Internet access.
#4 They Want Mobile Deals, Not Mobile Annoyances
When it comes to attitudes toward mobile ads, the Accenture study didn’t offer specific figures for the Brazil or Mexico markets but rather for all of the countries included. However, this data is telling. Nearly 40% of the respondents said that they find mobile banner ads and mobile text ads to be annoying. However, 66% said they are open to receiving coupons, special offers and promotions on their mobile phones. As such, structuring mobile messaging around savings may yield a better response in these markets.
#5 They Have Not Reached the Tipping Point for Mobile Payments
While 39% of the respondents in the 13 countries said they’d like to use mobile payments, 45% said they’re not interested. And overall, only 16% said they make mobile purchases. Of those who do use their phones to shop, 55% use them to buy event tickets, 46% buy train or plane tickets, 39% buy clothes and 37% buy consumer goods.
Despite this low response in this survey, new research predicts an explosion in mobile commerce in Brazil in 2013. Read more here.
To find out how we can help you reach Brazil, Latin America or U.S. Hispanics via a strategic campaign across all media, please contact us.