Phone use in Ireland above EU average

Irish people are one of the biggest users of smartphones in the world, at 13% above the EU average.

According to Google’s Consumer Barometer, 78% of us now use a smartphone.

This is separate to the 97% who use any type of mobile phone, basic or otherwise.

Separate to this Google research is the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s findings from October that showed 80% of people in Ireland have used a smartphone to make a purchase in the last six months.

Again Ireland leads in these stakes, as globally the average is 75% for a smartphone purchase.

In terms of usage, the Google study showed that in Ireland, 87% log on to the internet daily, 10% use it weekly, and 3% go online monthly.

The internet giant’s Consumer Barometer also signalled the death of the encyclopaedia.

A total of 83%said the internet was the first place they looked when they needed information.

Approximately 69% of Irish people said they just use the internet for fun, but when it comes to being efficient, more are carrying out errands online where possible.

The survey found that 56% of Irish people will do a task “digitally” if the opportunity is there to do so.

And when it comes to privacy, Irish people were extremely aware of the threats that the online world posed to them in that regard.

A total of 91% said that “data privacy and data protection” were very important to them.

In terms of how people use their phones, the Google data showed that weather, taking photographs, and alarm clock setting were the three main ways in which people rely on their devices.

Some 65% of people use a smartphone to set an alarm (the most popular common use), 58% of people living in Ireland use their device to take photographs, and 57% rely on it to tell the time.

Other popular uses were to check the weather at 40% and to read the news at 36%.

Only 7% read books and magazines on their smartphone.

This survey was carried out with thousands of members of the public across 56 countries around the world including places like China, India, and the US taking part.

Marie Davis, head of Google Marketing Solutions Ireland, said the “Irish consumer is savvy, particularly when you look at how fast they have adapted to mobile.”

In just four years, we have gone from 59% to 76%of us accessing the internet daily.

She pointed out that 35% of us said we use our smartphone to go online above any other device and that this was the highest percentage across Europe.

When asked why she thought Irish consumers were so “smartphone savvy,” she said the answer mostly likely lies in the social nature of the Irish, in that we have always liked to talk and text more than people in most other EU countries.

She cited several studies to back up this statement, such as ones from Comreg and Statcounter.

In terms of our purchasing behaviour online, 56% of Irish people will research a product on the internet beforehand.

That figure increases to 80% when it comes to travel and home devices.

The most popular sites Irish people buy from online are airlines and general internet retailers like Amazon.

Up to approximately 6,000 people were surveyed over the 11 question categories.

  • 78% of people living in Ireland own a smartphone.
  • 87% of users go online every day.
  • The internet is the first place 83% of Irish people look for information when they need it.
  • 91% said their data privacy and data protection were very important to them.
  • The most common use for a smartphone is to set an alarm clock, with 65% citing this as its primary use.
  • The secondary use for smartphones is to take pictures and videos, 58% of Irish people use their device for this purpose.

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