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Internet Quarterly - UK - December 2009

The focus for this edition of Mintel’s Internet Quarterly looks at the usage of legal music and game download services. In particular it explores the challenges that legal download services face to gain greater acceptance in the market, and looks at new innovations that could increase penetration further. It also assesses the effectiveness of proposed government measures to curtail online piracy.

  • Penetration of smartphones will increase quickly in 2010 (currently standing at 12%) as more retailers start to sell the iPhone, pushing down prices. New handset launches from competing mobile manufacturers will also create greater interest in the sector - in particular phones that run Google’s ‘Android’ operating system (which offers a user experience on a par with Apple’s handset).
  • Social network site usage shows no sign of slowing down: now reaching 49% of UK adults, growth has been driven this quarter by 55-64 year olds. Social networks must now ensure that they do not alienate their core youth user base, unwanted friend requests from grandparents aside, social networks do have the ability for users to control who they connect with.
  • In terms of overall web usage habits women are more focused on communication, while for men the web is a tool for entertainment. This is influenced by the fact that men are more likely to own gadgets that require downloaded content to operate. According to data in the Appendix – Device Ownership Analysis, males are more likely to have a portable media player (19% compared to 13% of females).
  • The latest quarter saw over mobile web usage increase by 4 percentage points to reach 31%. Usage will continue to increase as smartphones attain greater popularity into 2010. This will furthered by network initiatives such as Orange Social Life and Vodafone 360. Focussed around social networking, they make accessing advanced web functions as easy as sending a text message or making a call.
  • Women are more likely to shop online for clothing and footwear (replicating their offline shopping habits). However, it’s not just for the young - women aged 35-44 are the most likely to be buying clothes and footwear this way - influenced by the time-saving opportunities such sites offer and the increasingly relevant product ranges, e.g. ASOS moving into children’s clothing.
  • Despite the increasing range of mainstream download sites, usage of paid-for download sites remains niche. This is partly down to the fact activity is centred on early adopters (the younger) but also due to the poor perceptions of legal downloads, with only 9% of respondents feeling that they offer better quality and greater ease of use compared to unofficial sites.

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Table of contents

  1. Issues in the Market

    • Focus on legal downloads
      • Research methodology
        • Abbreviations
        • Future Opportunities

          • Using street games to drive restaurant reviews
            • Using the crowd to add insight
              • Putting the me in media
              • Market in Brief

                • 2010: Good for smartphones and netbooks
                  • Social networks continue to dominate UK web activity
                    • The mobile web to receive a boost from Vodafone and Orange
                      • Auction sites struggle, online fashion to take off in 2010
                      • Who’s Innovating?

                        • The other side of convergence
                          • Google flexes its Chrome OS muscles
                            • Virgin link up with TiVo
                            • Internet Penetration

                              • Key points
                                • Broadband as a legal right?
                                  • Figure 1: Penetration of broadband internet at home, by demographics, October 2009
                              • Device Ownership Analysis

                                • Key points
                                  • Will Tesco kick off an iPhone price war?
                                    • Figure 2: Device ownership summary, October 2008-Nov 2009
                                  • Android: Making smartphones mass market, quicker?
                                    • How mobile applications add value on top of the hardware
                                      • State of the market for games consoles
                                        • Figure 3: Static games console ownership, by gender, age and socio-economic group, July-November 2009
                                      • PSP Go yet to boost sales of Sony’s portable games device
                                        • Figure 4: PSP ownership, by gender, age and socio-economic group, July-November 2009
                                      • Netbook sales growth into 2010
                                      • Internet Browsing Habits

                                        • Key points
                                          • Social networking comes to the fore
                                            • Figure 5: Top ten UK websites, by reach, average daily visitors, average minutes per visit and average visits per visitor, July-September 2009*
                                          • Bricks and mortar stores set to challenge Amazon
                                            • Figure 6: Top ten UK retail websites. by reach, average daily visitors, average minutes per visit and average visits per visitor, July-September 2009*
                                          • Old names are the most read news sources online
                                            • Figure 7: Top ten UK news websites, by reach, average daily visitors, average minutes per visit and average visits per visitor, July-September 2009
                                        • Internet Usage Experiences

                                          • Key points
                                            • Social networking used by half of UK internet users
                                              • Figure 8: Types of activity undertaken on the internet in the last three months, October 2008-October 2009
                                              • Figure 9: Usage of social networking sites, by gender and age, July-October 2009
                                            • Social networks will not be the death of specialist sites
                                              • Price comparison sites versus voucher codes
                                                • Spotify – yet to make its impact felt
                                                  • Differences in internet activity by gender
                                                    • Figure 10: Types of activity undertaken on the internet in the last three months, by gender, October 2009
                                                • Mobile Usage Experiences

                                                  • Key points
                                                    • Impact of Orange Social Life and Vodafone 360
                                                      • Figure 11: Sites visited in the last three months using a mobile phone, July 2009-October 2009
                                                    • Mobile activities by gender
                                                      • Figure 12: Sites visited in the last three months using a mobile phone, by gender, October 2009
                                                  • Buying Behaviours

                                                    • Key points
                                                      • eBay not making the most of the downturn
                                                        • Figure 13: Type of websites purchased from in the last three months, July 2008-October 2009
                                                      • Usage of auction sites by age and gender
                                                        • Figure 14: Auction sites purchased from in the last three months, by gender and age, October 2009
                                                      • Impact of Amazon’s Kindle and the rise of e-books
                                                        • Book buying by age and gender
                                                          • Figure 15: Book websites purchased from in the last three months, by gender and age, October 2009
                                                        • How can online travel broaden its appeal to more internet users?
                                                          • Online fashion to benefit from new entrants and greater competition
                                                            • Clothing and footwear purchases by gender and age
                                                              • Figure 16: Clothing or footwear websites purchased from in the last three months, by gender and age, October 2009
                                                            • Online grocery shopping – not for the young
                                                              • Figure 17: Supermarket websites purchased from in the last three months, by gender and age, October 2009
                                                          • Legal Download Site Usage

                                                            • Key points
                                                              • More choice, but low interest in legal music downloads
                                                                • Figure 18: Usage of music and game downloads using a PC, November 2009
                                                              • Music and games downloads – still for early adopters
                                                                • Figure 19: Usage of music and game downloads using a PC, by gender and age, November 2009
                                                              • Pirates face losing their broadband connections
                                                                • Penalising those most likely to buy online music
                                                                  • Poor perception of legal download services
                                                                    • Figure 20: Motivations for downloading paid-for music or software, November 2009
                                                                  • What next for games download services?
                                                                    • A gaming equivalent to Spotify
                                                                    • Appendix – Device Ownership Analysis

                                                                        • Figure 21: Most popular devices consumers have at home, by demographics, November 2009
                                                                        • Figure 22: Next most popular devices consumers have at home, by demographics, November 2009
                                                                        • Figure 23: Other devices consumers have at home, by demographics, November 2009
                                                                        • Figure 24: Least popular devices consumers have at home, by demographics, November 2009
                                                                    • Appendix – Internet Usage Experiences

                                                                        • Figure 25: Most popular activity personally done on the internet at home in the last three months, by demographics, October 2009
                                                                        • Figure 26: Next most popular activity personally done on the internet at home in the last three months, by demographics, October 2009
                                                                        • Figure 27: Next most popular activity personally done on the internet at home in the last three months, by demographics, October 2009
                                                                        • Figure 28: Other activity personally done on the internet at home in the last three months, by demographics, October 2009
                                                                        • Figure 29: Least most popular activity personally done on the internet at home in the last three months, by demographics, October 2009
                                                                        • Figure 30: Types of activity undertaken by men on the internet in the last three months, by age, October 2009
                                                                        • Figure 31: Types of activity undertaken on the internet by women in the last three months, by age, October 2009
                                                                    • Appendix – Mobile Usage Experiences

                                                                        • Figure 32: Most popular types of site used when browsing on mobile phone in the last three months, by demographics, October 2009
                                                                        • Figure 33: Next most popular types of site used when browsing on mobile phone in the last three months, by demographics, October 2009
                                                                        • Figure 34: Sites visited in the last three months by men using a mobile phone, by age, October 2009
                                                                        • Figure 35: Sites visited in the last three months by women using a mobile phone, by age, October 2009
                                                                    • Appendix – Buying Behaviours

                                                                        • Figure 36: Most popular types of website purchased from on the internet in the last three months, by demographics, October 2009
                                                                        • Figure 37: Next most popular types of website purchased from on the internet in the last three months, by demographics, October 2009
                                                                        • Figure 38: Other types of website purchased from on the internet in the last three months, by demographics, October 2009
                                                                        • Figure 39: Least popular types of website purchased from on the internet in the last three months, by demographics, October 2009
                                                                        • Figure 40: Type of websites purchased from by men in the last three months, by age, October 2009
                                                                        • Figure 41: Type of websites purchased from by women in the last three months, by age, October 2009
                                                                    • Appendix – Legal Download Site Usage

                                                                        • Figure 42: Statements on buying music and games online using a PC, by demographics, November 2009
                                                                        • Figure 43: Motivations to download paid-for music and software, by demographics, November 2009

                                                                    Companies Covered

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                                                                    Internet Quarterly - UK - December 2009

                                                                    £1,695.00 (Excl.Tax)