iPrefer the iPhone to socialise online, do you?

closeThis article could be out of date, as it was published 1 year 3 months 9 days ago.

Mobile web users are twice as outgoing than desktop users, with the iPhone the most social device of them all.

With the mobile web unsurprisingly coming out on top, the same can be said for the iPhone, with users three times more likely to share content via their iPhone versus the desktop.

Consumers are also a further one and a half times more likely to share on an iPhone versus all other mobile devices, according to a social behaviour study by Palo Alto-publisher platform ShareThis.

Revealing insights into what people are sharing, on which devices, and the social networks they are sharing to the most, the report compared 4.9 billion social patterns across desktop web and 1.2 billion social patterns across mobile web.

“Digital is reshaping the publishing and advertising industries while mobile has changed the way people find, consume and share information,” says Kurt Abrahamson, CEO, ShareThis.

“Regardless of the device or channel, sharing is the purest expression of interest-based social activity.

“With these insights, publishers and advertisers can understand the connections between content, consumers, their devices and their sharing habits in order to navigate the ever-changing digital, social and mobile landscape.”

Size matters

ShareThis claims iPhone users share more on Facebook, while on iPads, the most dominant social channel is Pinterest throughout the day, with Facebook and Twitter following.

Consumers share to Facebook 66.4% of the time on iPhones compared to other channels while Pinterest is the dominating social channel on iPads with almost 50% of social activity.

So why is Pinterest so highly represented on iPads? Are people viewing different types of content on a larger screen vs. a smaller screen?

The report says the top shared content categories on Facebook for iPhone users include Family & Parenting, Arts & Entertainment, Health, Technology, and Government, while the top shared content categories on Pinterest for iPad users includes Food & Drink, Family & Parenting, Fashion & Beauty, Home & Garden,and Health & Fitness.

“What is interesting from the comparison is that the screen size of the device suggests a material impact on the types of content people are likely to consume and share,” says Dr. Yan Qu, vice president Data Science, ShareThis.

“In the case of iPads, people browse and share a lot of recipes, fashion, and home and garden subject matter, content that includes more graphics, and they use the highly visual Pinterest more.

“On iPhones, people socialise with their friends, listen to music, and read news updates; there they rely on Facebook more.”

Qu says that for marketers, understanding the usage patterns and the connection between devices and social habits is an important part of managing the social communication between their brands and users.

A time and a place to surf?

Even with our society becoming increasingly involved in mobile devices, desktop activities still account for a large portion of online activities throughout the day.

For desktop, the usage grows from early morning and stays high from around 9am to 3pm. From 3pm, desktop usage decreases and reaches a low point around 5pm.

Presumably this is the time when people are picking up their kids or commuting from work to home, thus the reduced usage on desktop. From 5pm, desktop usage climbs up again until about 8pm. From there the usage decreases again into late night.

Are you more social on your smartphone? Does screen size determine your viewing content? Tell us your preferences below

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