The Victorian Government digital innovation review Part B: The digital readiness of Victorian citizens




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Mobile use


A
There have been more active mobile phone accounts in Australia than people since 2007.
ustralians have been rapid adopters of mobile phones, with ACMA reporting as early as mid-2007 that there was already more than one mobile service for every Australian, with 21.26 million mobile phone services in operation at 30 June 2007.9

More recently, Nielsen reported that at the end of 2011, 51 per cent of online Australians aged 16+ owned a smartphone, 18 per cent of households owned a tablet computer and 13 per cent of households used an eReader device.10

This reflects a Google IPSOS Research study in late 2011, Mobile Planet, which reported that 52 per cent of Australians had smartphones, with a significantly larger number of younger people using these devices.11

Google has predicted that, in Australia, internet searches using mobile devices will overtake searches on desktop devices by 2013.12

T
By the end of 2011
51 per cent of online Australians aged 16+ had smartphones,
18 per cent of households had tablets and 13 per cent had eReaders.

he Google IPSOS Research study also indicated that Australians had, on average, 28 apps on their smartphones.

42 per cent of respondents said they expected to use more apps in the future while only 3 per cent expected to use fewer apps.

85 per cent of Australian respondents said they accessed social media on their smartphones, with 55 per cent accessing social media every day.

This decreased to 72 per cent for those aged 50+, with only 33 per cent accessing social media daily.



Figures for mobile use were unavailable at state levels, however it is reasonable to expect Victoria to reflect the national average. Therefore it is likely that over two million Victorians now own an internet-capable smartphone.

The Australian Department of Finance and Deregulation’s report, Interacting with Government—Australians' use and satisfaction with e-government services—201113 provided an insight into how Victorians use their mobile phones, 79 per cent using SMS, 38 per cent accessing the internet and 33 per cent using apps.

Based on the Google ISPSOS Research figure of a 52 per cent penetration rate for smartphones, the type of phones required for internet access and app use, the Department of Finance’s figures suggest that a


By extrapolation, more than 2 million Victorians use smartphones, with
76 per cent using them to access the internet.

pproximately 76 per cent of Victorian smartphone owners access the web and 66 per cent are using apps.
Mobile phone use —Interacting with Government Report 14




SMS/text messaging via Mobile

Use the web via your Mobile phone or similar portable device

Use an App on your Mobile phone or similar portable device

Use a tablet computer (such as an iPad, Galaxy Tab, or Slate 500)

Victoria

79%

38%

33%

11%

New South Wales

81%

40%

39%

15%

Queensland

81%

36%

36%

9%

South Australia

81%

32%

28%

9%

Western Australia

83%

34%

33%

10%

Tasmania

81%

31%

32%

11%

Northern Territory

83%

42%

42%

14%

Australian Capital Territory

89%

44%

40%

16%

National

81%

37%

35%

12%

The Google IPSOS report indicated that 82 per cent of smartphone owners use the internet (refer to the chart on the following page) – slightly higher than figures extrapolated from AGIMO’s report (76 per cent).

This was highly age dependent. While 93 per cent of Australian smartphone users aged 18-29 used the internet on their mobile, only 74 per cent of those aged 50+ did.

Y
55 per cent of 18-29 year old smartphone users use internet on their phone multiple times a day.
ounger users were the most active internet users, with 55 per cent of 18-29 year olds indicating they had multiple internet sessions on their smartphone daily, while only 30 per cent of users aged 50+ did the same.

Overall 63 per cent of 18-29 year old Australians indicated they used the internet on their smartphone every day, compared to 59 per cent of 30-49 year olds and only 39 per cent of people aged 50+.

Increasing rates of mobile internet use have also been noted by the Victorian Department of Business and Innovation. During the first quarter of 2012, 12 per cent of visitors to the vic.gov.au portal used mobile devices to access it. This had increased from 4 per cent during the first quarter of 2011 and 1 per cent in the first quarter of 2010.

The Victorian Government has also been active in releasing mobile apps for citizens, with VictoriaOnline listing 40 apps from Victorian state agencies and three from Victorian local governments, alongside 33 apps from the Australian Government15.




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