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Smartphone society creates market opportunity in the UK

6/08/2015 by Richard Maddock


Britain is now a "smartphone society", according to UK telecoms regulator Ofcom, whose latest study reveals how Brits are now more likely to pick up their smartphone over their laptop in order to access the internet.

As the Financial Times reports, with one in three people now stating that a smartphone is their preferred device for surfing the web, the shift online will create market opportunities for firms to exploit.

The findings from Ofcom may also increase the demand for tech talent, with retailers and other businesses needing to ensure they have the employees to facilitate mobile's ever growing importance.

The 30% of people who still named their laptop as their most important device is only likely to continue falling, considering that laptops led smartphones by 17 percentage points in a similar study conducted only 12 months ago.

In declaring the UK a "smartphone society", Ofcom highlighted how half of people aged 55 to 64 are now in possession of a smartphone.

However, the FT explains that the shift towards smartphones is something of a double-edged sword for firms, as the potential opportunities it has brought about is tempered by the challenge to ensure any online offerings are mobile friendly.

"You have to be mobile-aware. It is a non-trivial exercise preparing for mobile," stressed Paul Lee, a media analyst at Deloitte.

Lee adds that many businesses will see benefit in becoming mobile-centric, but cautioned against focussing solely on mobile as consumers are still likely to pick up their laptops for trickier transactions.

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