Smartphones: Sleepless in Singapore

An omnibus survey by Toluna revealed that Singapore consumers are increasingly addicted to their smartphones. While as high as 91% of users see technology as a form of happiness, three-quarters (76%) also see it as a source of stress, which highlights the contradictory relationship that Singaporean consumers have with connected devices.

As well as seeking to uncover consumer feelings towards technology, the study, which questioned a representative sample of 500 Singaporean Internet users, also aimed to discover which devices consumers use to access the internet, and which activities they undertake using specific devices. A comparative study was also carried out in Australia.

The results highlighted the rising phenomenon of smartphone addiction in Singapore, with 84% of internet users keeping their smartphone by their bed, and nearly half of them (47%) checking it if they wake up during the night (compared with 69% and only 29% respectively in the Australia).

Smartphones are used for very specific online activities among Singapore Internet users, mostly for entertainment purposes – such as streaming music (57%), playing games (52%) and reading the news (49%). Meanwhile, activities such as online banking still tend to be completed on desktop devices (52% on desktop compared to 42% on smartphones).

“The ownership of smartphones has grown exponentially in Asia in recent years. Singapore is one of the countries with the highest penetration rate in the world. We wanted to discover precisely how and why consumers are using digital devices through the survey,” explained James Rogers, Managing Director, APAC, Toluna.

“Although smartphone use is soaring, marketers should incorporate a multichannel approach to their marketing strategy and optimise for all screens, understanding that consumers turn to different devices for specific activities and thus identify the right channel for communication.”

Other key findings from the study include:

  • Singaporean consumers are more mobile when compared to Australian consumers. In Singapore smartphones (93%) and laptops (90%) are the most common way of accessing the Internet, compared to Australia where 78% connect using (laptops) and 76% (PCs).
  • 74% of Singapore Internet users access the web using a tablet, indicating this is a popular channel. A tablet is most likely to be used to play games and watch videos.
  • Multiscreen behavior is common practice among Singapore consumers, as high as 73% reporting they have experience using two devices simultaneously.
  • 60% surf the Internet for more than three hours each day. TV is no longer the most common form of media interaction in Singapore, with 30% (66%) watching more than three hours of TV every day.