A Ipsos poll conducted by the global research company for Reuters News has found that “a strong majority” (85%) of online-connected global citizens in 24 countries use the Internet for emails while six in 10 (62%) use it for social networking”. Just more than one in 10 use the internet for connecting with people through voice-over IP (14%). South African online users are above global average for all three activities.
Email is King…but social media is close behind
Most (85%) global respondents who are connected online report they use the internet for sending and receiving emails, including a majority of those in each country surveyed except for Saudi Arabia where only about half (46%) say so. Those in Hungary (94%) are most likely to say they use the internet for emailing, followed by nine in ten of those in Sweden (92%), Belgium (91%), Indonesia (91%), Argentina (90%) and Poland (90%). South Africa shows a high percentage of those using the internet for email – at 87%. Social media popularity is high among global citizens using the internet. A majority of them (62%) say they visit social networking sites, forums or blogs including about eight in ten of those in Indonesia (83%), Argentina (76%) and Russia (75%) and about seven in ten of those in South Africa (73%), Sweden (72%), Spain (71%) and Hungary (70%). Even in countries where social media surfing is less popular, a sizable minority of those connected online still report using the Internet in this way: 35% in Japan, 42% in Saudi Arabia and 50% in France.
In South Africa, the advent of social networking spreads beyond the Internet. According to a recent report by Fuseware, Mxit and Facebook lead the way in South African user numbers, while Twitter has seen the most dramatic growth in social networking in the past year, and BlackBerry Messenger is the fastest growing network in the second half of 2011.
The future of voice Voice-over IP (VOIP)
Audio conversations conducted via internet connection is used by 14% of online-connected global citizens. The relatively new technology has taken hold of a third of net surfers from Russia (36%), Turkey (32%) and a quarter of those in India (25%). Only a handful from Brazil (4%), France (5%), the United States (6%) and Belgium (6%) are using VOIP. Sixteen percent of South African online-connected citizens currently use VOIP which is above global average.