Mobile Roundup: Android, apps and shopping popular with consumers

With Mobile World Congress still fresh in the memory, we definitely have mobile on the brain.  So we were happy to see comScore’s 2012 Mobile Future in Focus report come out last week, covering all of the activity taking place in various mobile markets around the world.

Not surprisingly, smartphone adoption grew in the United States last year – from 27 percent in 2010 to 42 percent in 2011.  Some of the other takeaways from the report for 2011:

– Google Android has 47.3 percent of the U.S. smartphone market, Apple iOS has nearly 30 percent, and RIM has 16 percent

– The iPhone 4 was the best-selling smartphone

– Mobile media usage (comScore defines this as browsing the mobile web, accessing applications, or downloading content) was higher than 50 percent in many markets

– In the U.S., health was the fastest-growing mobile media category, followed by retail, electronic payments and auction sites

– More than half of the U.S. smartphone population used their phone to perform retail research while inside a store

– 1 in 5 smartphone users scanned product barcodes, while 1 in 8 compared prices on their phone while in a store

From the data, it’s clear that consumers like the convenience that smartphones offer – for working, surfing, shopping, and downloading.  What’s next for 2012?  comScore says tablet adoption will soar, and with that will come increased digital media consumption.

The company also says that retailers need to keep an eye on consumers’ changing shopping habits: “It is not uncommon for a consumer to call upon multiple devices before completing a purchase… For traditional retailers to successfully navigate this changing landscape in 2012 they must build strategies that address audiences across these devices throughout their shopping and purchasing process, or risk losing that customer’s sale.”

What do you think about this news? Are you surprised that “health” is the fastest growing mobile media category? Do you prefer Android, or iOS, or something else? Would you be more likely to shop at retailers that are more ‘mobile-friendly’? Sound off in our comments section.

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