Byravee Iyer
Jul 26, 2013

Vietnam, Philippines' online usage skyrockets: Comscore

ASIA-PACIFIC - More than 40 per cent of global internet users are now based in Asia-Pacific, with an audience of 644 million, compared to 604 million users in 2012, according to Comscore’s ‘Digital future in focus’ report.

Vietnam and Philippines are the fastest growing markets in SEA
Vietnam and Philippines are the fastest growing markets in SEA

China accounts for 55.2 per cent of the internet population, Japan makes up 12.2 per cent. Southeast Asian markets and India account for roughly 10 per cent each of the Asia-Pacific internet population.

North American users spend the most time online. However, Asia-Pacific online usage is growing faster than in the rest of the world. In Southeast Asia, Vietnam (26.2 hours per month) and Thailand (27.2 hours), driven in part by their younger populations, spend the greatest amount of time online. Roughly 74 per cent of the internet population in both countries is under the age of 35.

Vietnam also has the largest audience in the region, adding two million users from last year, a growth rate of 14 per cent. Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand are the other large markets in Southeast Asia. The internet audience in the Philippines is the fastest growing in the region, increasing by 22 per cent since 2012.

When it comes to platforms, Comscore data showed that non-PC traffic in Southeast Asia is zooming ahead, accounting for 20 per cent of usgae. In September 2012, that number stood at 15.4 per cent. Additionally, multi-platform device usage in Southeast Asia varies significantly by time of day. Desktop internet usage dominates during work hours, while mobile phones and tablets are relatively more popular during the evening.

Social networking captures a large share of PC screen time in the region, outdoing the global average in several countries. While the global average is 19.7 per cent, people in the Philippines spend 41.5 per cent on their online time on social-networking sites. Malaysians aren’t far behind, dedicating 32.3 per cent of their time to these sites. The situation is similar in Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam. Only Singapore is behind the global average, with users spending 16.1 per cent of their time on social networks.

Of the social networks, Facebook continues to be the number one social network across markets in Southeast Asia. The region boasts three (Philippines, Thailand and Malaysia) of Facebook’s top 15 markets ranked by market penetration. In fact, the Philippines is Facebook’s second largest market by reach. Twitter, LinkedIn and Tumblr are also gaining popularity in the region.  

YouTube ranked as the top entertainment website in each of the Southeast Asian markets. Online videos show steady growth with 42 million video viewers in the region. Once again, the Philippines and Vietnam recorded the highest growth at 18 per cent and 14 per cent, respectively.

Google accounts for the majority of videos viewed overall in the region, with some exceptions. In Indonesia 58 per cent of videos viewed are on video properties, of which none comprise more than 2.5 per cent of the total. In the Philippines, 14.5 per cent of videos viewed are on Facebook.

The number of people using search continues to grow, except in Singapore and Malaysia. It remained stagnant in Singapore, while it slipped 2 per cent in Malaysia.

Men in the region spend more time on the internet than women. The differences were particularly stark in Vietnam, Singapore and Thailand. In Vietnam for instance, men spent an average of 27.9 hours on the internet versus the 24.2 hours women spent.

As for retailers, Amazon and Lazada are among the top players in the region. Conversely, in Vietnam local companies such as Vatiga.com dominate the market. However, Amazon has been losing its hold in Malaysia, Vietnam and Indonesia, dropping more than 20 per cent in each of these markets. Meanwhile, retailer Lazada is showing strong growth, posting gains in Vietnam (52 per cent), Thailand (60 per cent), Philippines (46 per cent), Malaysia (49 per cent) and Indonesia (84 per cent).

According to the report, the reach of news and information is the highest in Singapore, but visitors in Vietnam tend to spend more time on news sites. Blogs are an important component of news, with reach in this category highest in Indonesia, Thailand and  Malaysia well above the global average of 53.3 per cent.

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