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Digital Trends Spring - UK - April 2011

The report goes on to looks at the commercial impact that the extreme weather conditions throughout December had on the all important Christmas trading period, and also suggests ways in which sites can become more competitive.

  • Broadband penetration for all British adults reached 68.5% this quarter. But whilst some demographic groups such as ABs and 35-44-year-olds are at virtual saturation with around 85% penetration, others and most notably the old and poor are struggling to rise above 30%. This digital divide is structural and has been widening over the years.
  • Use of social networking sites has dipped slightly from its April 2010 high but is holding steady at just over 60% of internet users. At the same time Facebook is reported as having generated $1.2 billion in revenue during the first nine months of 2010.
  • Usage figures for mobile internet activities boomed in the last quarter of 2010; using a search engine was up 36%, email was up 29% and accessing a social networking site rose 40%.
  • Users of mobile phones based on Google’s Android operating system now have the option of the Firefox 4 browser from Mozilla, which many users will be familiar with from the PC. Firefox 4 allows users to synchronise bookmarks with the desktop version which could be its greatest asset as users increasingly demand a mobile experience that matches up as closely as possible to the desktop one.
  • The run-up to Christmas 2010 featured some considerable rises in traditional festive purchasing categories, such as CDs/DVDs (up 22%), books (13%), toiletries (43%), toys and games (56%) and gifts (38%). However, British Retail Consortium data showed that ecommerce sales growth was the same in December and November; in December 2009 it was almost 10 percentage points higher than November.
  • Amongst internet users as a whole the most common words or phrases associated with online dating (aside from ‘not for me’) are “unsafe”, “expensive”, “embarrassing”, “desperate” and “waste of time”. Lapsed users (10% of internet users) are more likely than the average internet user to see online dating as more expensive and more of a waste of time, suggesting that the experience leaves many disillusioned.

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Table of contents

  1. Introduction

      • Research methodology
        • Crown copyright
          • Abbreviations
          • Executive Summary

              • Broadband penetration and device ownership
                • Digital divide persists
                  • Figure 1: Broadband penetration, 2004-10
                • Ebooks grabbing the headlines, but much penetration remains low as yet
                  • Figure 2: Electronic devices have at home, October 2010-December 2010
                • Internet usage
                  • Figure 3: Activities personally done on the internet at home in the last three months, October 2010-December 2010
                • Browser wars
                  • Mobile internet popularity on the rise
                    • Christmas boost for e-tailers?
                      • Innovation
                        • Special focus – online dating
                          • Figure 4: Participation in online dating, April 2009-December 2010
                          • Figure 5: Words/phrases associated with online dating, April 2009-December 2010
                        • What we think
                        • Who’s Innovating?

                          • Key points
                            • iPad 2 cements Apple’s grip on tablet market
                              • iPlayer extends its reach beyond the BBC
                                • LightRadio may boost mobile coverage
                                  • McDonald’s moves to pay and wave
                                    • Toshiba unveils no-glasses 3D TVs
                                      • Soul2Match automates online dating
                                      • Broadband Penetration

                                        • Key points
                                          • Penetration inches upward but some groups remain marginalised
                                            • Figure 6: Broadband penetration by demographics, 2004-10
                                          • Market share figures hide BT’s continuing huge influence
                                            • Figure 7: Market share of fixed broadband providers in the UK (estimated figures Q3 2010)
                                          • Broadband for all…?
                                            • Figure 8: Proportion of households, by region with sub 2 mbps lines, UK 2011
                                          • Broadband access key to economic success
                                            • Reaching the final third is the challenge
                                              • What is NGA superfast broadband?
                                                • Broadband speed – not all it is made out to be
                                                  • Variation by technology
                                                  • Device Ownership Analysis

                                                    • Key points
                                                        • Figure 9: Electronic devices have at home, April 2009-December 2010
                                                      • iPhone being caught by Android
                                                        • E-books in the ascendancy…
                                                          • …and driving device sales
                                                            • Can Nintendo continue to forge new markets?
                                                              • HD comes of age as Sky updates EPG
                                                              • Internet Usage Experiences

                                                                • Key points
                                                                    • Figure 10: Activities personally done on the internet at home in the last three months, April 2009-December 2010
                                                                  • Chrome taking IE market share to leave Firefox winner in Europe…
                                                                    • …as Google pursues Microsoft at every turn
                                                                      • ‘Do not track’ protects privacy…
                                                                        • …as search undermines it
                                                                          • Social networking struggling to convince marketers
                                                                          • Mobile Usage Experiences

                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                • Figure 11: Sites visited in the last three months using a mobile phone, July 2009-December 2010
                                                                              • Hot spot access getting hotter
                                                                                • Android phones get another browser
                                                                                  • Mobile payments taking off…
                                                                                    • …as geolocation services add to mobile experience
                                                                                      • Limitations of the mobile advertising medium exposed
                                                                                        • Leg work taken out of on-the-spot price comparison
                                                                                          • BBC iPlayer to boost watching video on mobile
                                                                                          • Buying Behaviours

                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                • Figure 12: Types of websites purchased from in the last three months, April 2009-December 2010
                                                                                              • Impact of Christmas good – but not great…
                                                                                                • …as snow takes the rap
                                                                                                  • Delivery and customer satisfaction moving to centre stage
                                                                                                    • The only way is multi-channel
                                                                                                      • Take VAT
                                                                                                        • Clothing benefits from Christmas and customer service…
                                                                                                          • …as does food
                                                                                                          • Participation in Online Dating

                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                              • Rise in online singles good for dating sites
                                                                                                                • Figure 13: Current personal situation, April 2009-December 2010
                                                                                                              • Internet undermining relationships…?
                                                                                                                • Those looking for love are young and wealthy
                                                                                                                  • Figure 14: Current personal situation, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                • Overall picture unchanged
                                                                                                                  • Figure 15: Participation in online dating, April 2009-December 2010
                                                                                                                • Singles keen on a relationship most likely to be proficient in online dating
                                                                                                                  • Figure 16: Participation in online dating, by current personal situation, December 2010
                                                                                                                • Romance not the best basis for finding an online partner?
                                                                                                                • Perceptions of Online Dating

                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                    • Unsafe, expensive, embarrassing, desperate – not the ideal image
                                                                                                                      • Figure 17: Words/phrases associated with online dating, April 2009-December 2010
                                                                                                                    • Safety a key driver for dating sites
                                                                                                                      • Expense a key deterrent – beware Facebook?
                                                                                                                        • Figure 18: Words/phrases associated with online dating, by current personal situation, December 2010
                                                                                                                      • Even existing users see online dating as expensive – but fun and easy to use
                                                                                                                        • Figure 19: Words/phrases associated with online dating, by participation in online dating, December 2010
                                                                                                                      • Mobile apps present opportunities and challenges for existing operators
                                                                                                                        • Lapsed users feel the stigma?
                                                                                                                        • Appendix – Device Ownership Analysis

                                                                                                                            • Figure 20: Most popular electronic devices have at home, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                            • Figure 21: Next most popular electronic devices have at home, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                            • Figure 22: Other electronic devices have at home, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                            • Figure 23: Least popular electronic devices have at home, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                        • Appendix – Internet Usage Activities

                                                                                                                            • Figure 24: Most popular activities personally done on the internet at home in the last three months, December 2010
                                                                                                                            • Figure 25: Next most popular activities personally done on the internet at home in the last three months, December 2010
                                                                                                                            • Figure 26: Popular activities personally done on the internet at home in the last three months, December 2010
                                                                                                                            • Figure 27: Other activities personally done on the internet at home in the last three months, December 2010
                                                                                                                            • Figure 28: Least popular activities personally done on the internet at home in the last three months, December 2010
                                                                                                                        • Appendix – Mobile Usage Activities

                                                                                                                            • Figure 29: Most popular sites visited in the last three months using a mobile phone, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                            • Figure 30: Next most popular sites visited in the last three months using a mobile phone, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                            • Figure 31: Other sites visited in the last three months using a mobile phone, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                        • Appendix – Buying Behaviours

                                                                                                                            • Figure 32: Most popular types of websites purchased from in the last three months, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                            • Figure 33: Next most popular types of websites purchased from in the last three months, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                            • Figure 34: Other types of websites purchased from in the last three months, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                            • Figure 35: Least popular types of websites purchased from in the last three months, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                        • Appendix – Participation in Online Dating

                                                                                                                            • Figure 36: Current personal situation, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                            • Figure 37: Participation in online dating, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                        • Appendix – Perceptions of Online Dating

                                                                                                                            • Figure 38: Most popular words/phrases associated with online dating, by demographics, December 2010
                                                                                                                            • Figure 39: Next most popular words/phrases associated with online dating, by demographics, December 2010

                                                                                                                        Companies Covered

                                                                                                                        • Advertising Standards Authority
                                                                                                                        • Amazon.co.uk
                                                                                                                        • Apple Retail UK
                                                                                                                        • Asda Group Ltd
                                                                                                                        • ASOS (UK retail sales)
                                                                                                                        • Barclaycard
                                                                                                                        • Betfred
                                                                                                                        • British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)
                                                                                                                        • British Retail Consortium
                                                                                                                        • British Sky Broadcasting Group plc (BSkyB)
                                                                                                                        • FriendsReunited
                                                                                                                        • Goldman Sachs Group, Inc., The
                                                                                                                        • Google, Inc.
                                                                                                                        • House of Fraser Plc
                                                                                                                        • IKEA
                                                                                                                        • Interactive Advertising Bureau (UK)
                                                                                                                        • John Lewis Plc (department store)
                                                                                                                        • Ladbrokes Ltd
                                                                                                                        • Little Chef
                                                                                                                        • Marks & Spencer
                                                                                                                        • Microsoft Corporation
                                                                                                                        • Mozilla Foundation (The)
                                                                                                                        • Nintendo UK Entertainment Ltd
                                                                                                                        • Nokia Corporation (UK)
                                                                                                                        • O2 / Telefonica UK (Retail)
                                                                                                                        • Ocado
                                                                                                                        • Procter & Gamble UK & Ireland
                                                                                                                        • Radio Joint Audience Research Limited
                                                                                                                        • River Island Clothing Co Ltd
                                                                                                                        • Samsung Electronics (UK) Ltd
                                                                                                                        • Skype Technologies S.A.
                                                                                                                        • Sony (UK) Ltd
                                                                                                                        • T-Mobile (UK) Ltd
                                                                                                                        • TalkTalk Telecom Ltd.
                                                                                                                        • Tesco Plc
                                                                                                                        • The Carphone Warehouse Ltd
                                                                                                                        • Tiscali UK
                                                                                                                        • Toshiba Corporation
                                                                                                                        • Virgin Media Ltd
                                                                                                                        • Visa Europe
                                                                                                                        • Yahoo! UK & Ireland

                                                                                                                        Digital Trends Spring - UK - April 2011

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