Mobile Browser has the reach, Apps have the engagement. So, who’s winning?


Last month, comScore released its Mobile App Report (see this amazing article by Marketing Land). The report contained many interesting findings, but its big takeaway was this:

There’s a divergence between reach and engagement.

  • The desktop and mobile Web have much greater audience.
  • Consumers spend the majority of their mobile time with a very few heavily used apps.

As the chart below indicates, the desktop is not dead: usage has grown since 2013. But that growth is modest compared with mobile.
comscore Mobile apps report

Sixty-two percent of all digital media time is now mobile, and the majority of that is in apps, which recently surpassed TV. By contrast, time spent on the desktop has plummeted to 38 percent from 49 percent since 2013.

comscore Mobile apps report

What’s interesting here is the concentration of time in apps (nearly 90 percent of mobile time) compared with their more limited audience size. The mobile Web has a much larger audience, though one that’s much less engaged.

comscore Mobile apps report

Morgan Stanley recently presented its additional findings in a research note that plays up mobile browser usage.

Characterizing the browser as the ultimate mobile app, the firm cites its own research and comScore data for the proposition that “US mobile browser audiences are 2X larger than app audiences across the top 50 mobile web properties and have grown 1.2X faster over the past 3 years.”

Mobile web vs. app traffic for top 50 mobile properties

mobile web vs. app traffic

Source: Morgan Stanley rendering of comScore data

The research note is designed to combat the perception that the mobile Web is anemic or in decline (and by extension, Google). It’s not. As the data show, mobile browser usage is growing faster than apps and delivering larger audiences for most publishers.

Morgan Stanley points out that only 12 of the top 50 mobile properties have more traffic coming from apps than the browser. The discussion argues for the primacy of the mobile browser for most publishers, brands and marketers.

As a practical matter, Morgan Stanley is absolutely correct. Most publishers will see the bulk of their traffic from mobile browser usage and not apps. The reason isn’t because the browser is somehow superior or that the “open internet must win.” The browser drives more traffic because consumers are highly selective about apps.

Mobile app traffic exceeds the browser in only a few cases

Mobile traffic apps vs. mobile web

Source: Morgan Stanley, comScore

Because of smartphone memory constraints and the mediocre quality of most apps, users are only going to download and engage with a small fraction of the apps on the market. For example, I may have one or two retailer apps on my phone (e.g., Amazon), though I shop at many more stores. My choices are tied to frequency and loyalty; I’m not going to download 10 different retail apps. Instead, I’ll use search and the browser to find information from retailers I’m more casually invested in.

Unable to deliver compelling experiences and disappointed by a lack of traction, many retailers have turned away from apps and toward the mobile Web. It’s also becoming more costly to acquire app users who may quickly churn anyway. (Here the positions of Google and Facebook are reversed, with Google positioning itself as the lower-cost alternative for app-install ads.)

It’s important to be clear that mobile apps aren’t appropriate for every merchant or marketer. The apps vs. mobile browser discussion is really about audience segmentation and user behavior patterns. As a crude generalization, the browser is for more casual audiences and apps are for more frequent and loyal customers.

I think this apps vs. browser argument is so charged partly because it’s a surrogate for Apple’s and Google’s competing visions for the mobile internet. These dueling positions have zealous detractors and partisans.

Putting aside “ideology,” marketers need to have a clear view of what approach makes the most sense for them based on a realistic understanding of the customer and her behavior and usage patterns.

It’s time to end the browser vs. apps “or” debate; it’s really about “and”.

[Source: Marketing Land]

Retail is the Fastest Growing Usage Category on Smartphones in Italy

The latest insights from our comScore Mobile Advisor Study show that the Total Italy Mobile Universe accounted for 48,000,000 users in the three-month average ending November 2013. Smartphone users represent 64.1 percent of the total Italian mobile audience, an increase of 23.5 percent from the previous year.

Mobile commerce is already playing a major role in online retail in Italy. These are some of the key findings:

  • Usage of retail apps and sites showed the strongest year-over-year increase of 74.8 percent, followed by the Health category with 66.6% growth. The e-payments and money transfer category came third with 65.2 percent growth and over 2 Million additional users over the last year.
  • Financial and retail / m-commerce related services belong to the most popular usage categories accessed by Italian smartphone owners. Online retail sites and apps were visited by 23.8 percent of smartphone owners, followed closely by shopping and price guides (22.6 percent).
  • Accessing electronic payments or money transfer services on smartphones has also been popular, with 21.7 percent of Italian smartphone owners using those services in November 2013.

If you would like to access to the full report contact us


[Source: ComScore]

La Penetrazione di Smartphone in Italia raggiunge il 51,2% ad Ottobre 2012

comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR), leader nella misurazione del mondo digitale, ha rilasciato oggi i dati del servizio MobiLens, che riportano i principali trend nel settore di telefonia mobile nei cinque principali mercati europei (Francia, Germania, Italia, Spagna e Regno Unito), nel trimestre Agosto-Ottobre 2012. Lo studio rivela che in Spagna si registra la penetrazione di smartphone più elevata d’Europa  (63,2% di utenti di telefonia mobile) e maggiore crescita anno su anno con un aumento di 14,8 punti percentuali. In Italia, nonostante la flessione di 17 punti percentuali, Nokia rimane il principale produttore di telefoni cellulari, con il 35,5% del mercato, seguita da Samsung, con una quota di mercato pari al 28,3%. Il sistema operativo Android di Google realizza la crescita più significativa e risulta utilizzato dal 34,3% dei possessori di smartphone, mentre Apple raggiunge il 33,9%.

La metà degli utenti italiani di telefonia mobile possiede uno smartphone
I possessori di smartphone in Europa sono aumentati del 35% nell’ultimo anno, da 97,7 milioni a Ottobre 2011 a 131,5 milioni a Ottobre 2012. L’attuale penetrazione degli smartphone nei mercati EU5 è pari al 54,6% degli utenti di telefonia mobile, un aumento di 13 punti percentuali rispetto allo stesso periodo dell’anno precedente. La Spagna ha la più alta penetrazione di smartphone (al 63,2%), seguita da Regno Unito (62,3%) e Francia (51,4%). La Spagna ha registrato la più forte crescita nell’ultimo anno, con un guadagno di 14,8 punti percentuali, seguita dal Regno Unito, con un aumento del 14,2%.

Con 24,6 milioni di utenti smartphone nel mese di Ottobre 2012, l’Italia si è classificata quarta, con una penetrazione del 51,2%, registrando un incremento di 9,1 punti percentuali.

Penetrazione Smartphone (% di utenti di telefonia mobile) nei paesi EU5
Media 3 Mesi a fine Ott. 2012 vs. Ott. 2011
Totale Abbonati Smartphone UK, DE, FR, ES e IT, Età 13+
Fonte: comScore MobiLens
Ott-11 Ott-12 Diff % 
EU5 41.6% 54.6% 13
Spagna 48.4% 63.2% 14.8
UK 48.1% 62.3% 14.2
Francia 38.1% 51.4% 13.3
Italia 42.1% 51.2%  9.1
Germania 34.2% 48.4% 14.2

Nokia è in vetta alla classifica dei produttori italiani di Smartphone ma Samsung guadagna quote
Nokia resta il primo produttore OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) di smartphone in Italia, con 8,7 milioni di utenti e il 35,5% del mercato. Samsung ha registrato una crescita eccezionale durante l’anno e si trova ora al secondo posto dopo aver raddoppiato la propria quota di mercato dal 13,0% al 28,3% nel corso dell’ultimo anno. Apple si classifica al terzo posto, con una quota del 17,3%. RIM e HTC sono dietro, rispettivamente con una quota del 5,0% e del 3,7%.

Top OEM di telefonia mobile
Media 3 Mesi a fine Ott. 2012 vs. Ott. 2011
Totale Abbonati Smartphone Italia, Età 13+
Fonte: comScore MobiLens
Quota (%) di pubblico Smartphone
Ott-11 Ott-12 Diff   %
Nokia 52,5 % 35,5 % -17
Samsung 13,0 % 28,3 % 15,3
Apple 15,0 % 17,3% 2,3
RIM 5,4 % 5,0 % -2,3
HTC 4,9 % 3,7 % – 1,2

Google si posiziona come leader italiano nei sistemi operativi per smartphone
Durante l’anno, Android di Google ha registrato la crescita più significativa (18,7 punti percentuali), diventando il primo sistema operativo in Italia. La Symbian ha drammaticamente perso la sua posizione di leader, diminuendo la propria quota di mercato di 20,3 punti percentuali. Apple si classifica al terzo posto con una quota del 17,3% (+2,3 punti percentuali), seguita da Microsoft che ha detenuto il 7,2% del mercato dei sistemi operativi nel trimestre Agosto-Ottobre 2012.

Top Sistemi operativi per Smartphone
Media 3 Mesi a fine Ott. 2012 vs. Ott. 2011
Totale Abbonati Smartphone Italia, Età 13+
Fonte:   comScore MobiLens
Quota (%) di pubblico Smartphone
Ott-11 Ott-12 Diff % 
Google 15,6 % 34,3 % 18,7
Symbian 54,2 % 33,9 % -20,3
Apple 15,0 % 17,3 % 2.3
Microsoft 8,0 % 7,2 % -0,8
RIM 5,4 % 5,0 % -0,5

A proposito di MobiLens
I dati MobiLens provengono da una indagine online svolta su un campione nazionale rappresentativo di abbonati alla telefonia mobile dai 13 anni in su. I dati sull’utilizzo di telefonia mobile si riferiscono al cellulare principale dell’intervistato e non includono i dati relativi al secondo apparecchio eventualmente posseduto dall’intervistato.

[Source: comScore]

15,5% of European Smartphone Owners Have a Tablet

Smartphone penetration in EU5 (France, Germany, Italy, Spain and UK) is now at 53.7% with nearly 130 million people using smartphones in the three month average ending September 2012. Out of this smartphone audience, 15.5% also own a tablet, compared to only 9.3% last year. This 6.2 percentage point increase demonstrates the rapid growth of tablet adoption across Europe.

Looking at each of the EU5 countries, the UK is leading the way with 17.7% of their smartphone audience also owning a tablet, followed closely by Spain with 16.9%. Italy and France are on par with 15.1% tablet penetration among smartphone users, but Germany falls behind the EU5 average with only 12.8% of the smartphone audience owning tablets.

EU Smartphone Owners With Tablets

 [Source: ComScore]

What’s Next for the iPhone?

With the unveiling of the latest iPhone reportedly slated for September 12, rumors continue to abound as to what the next generation of this iconic device will bring to the mobile industry – particularly as the evolution of the iPhone tends to send ripples through the mobile landscape at large. When the first iPhone was released in 2007, it paved the way for greater adoption of smartphones among mobile users, pioneering the use of touch screens and sleek mobile user interfaces.comScore MobiLens data show that iPhone users now account for a third of the 114 million U.S. smartphone users age 13+ as the iPhone continues to carve out an increasing share of this rapidly expanding market.


In tracing the evolution of the iPhone over the past 5 years, we’ve also seen the iPhone popularize the use of mobile apps through the introduction of the App Store and significantly raise the profile of smartphones as devices used more broadly for mobile media consumption. Concurrently, we’ve seen the demographics of iPhone users shift from being predominantly male, affluent, and younger to having an equal split between genders, with the youngest and oldest age segments and users earning between $50-$75K figuring among the fastest growing segments.

With the release of newer iPhone models over the years, the device has grown in adoption not just because of improvements made, but also because of efforts made by Apple to bring the iPhone to a broader mass market. When the iPhone was first released in the U.S., it was made available only through a single carrier – AT&T (then Cingular). Since the release of the iPhone 4 on Verizon, Apple has continually broadened the network of wireless carriers for the iPhone and sold older generations of the phone at discounted prices, making the device more accessible to the average consumer.

Despite the availability of earlier generation iPhone models at significantly more affordable price points, the growth in the iPhone’s user base as of late appears to come primarily from adopters of more recently-released models. Today, nearly 2 in 5 of the 38.2 million Americans using iPhones are on the iPhone 4, which was released just two years ago. More impressive than that is the fact that 35 percent of iPhone users today are on the iPhone 4S, which was released less than a year ago.


With the impending release of the next iteration of the iPhone, all eyes will be focused on the changes that the next generation of this device brings to the market. As we observed prior to the release of the iPhone 4S, any move that Apple makes could have an impact on the mobile industry at large. Among the new features rumored to be included in the new iPhone, the capacity to support LTE network connectivity stands out as perhaps one of the most heavily-anticipated improvements to the device and one that represents a significant upgrade to the mobile web experience.

Although less than 10 percent of smartphone users currently use LTE-enabled devices, we have seen adoption of LTE-enabled phones increase nearly tenfold in the past year. This growth may reflect both that device manufacturers increasingly see the value of supporting LTE and that mobile users have a willingness to pay to support their demand for faster mobile media consumption.


If the new iPhone does support LTE, it could indicate that Apple is betting that faster mobile connectivity will usher in the future of the industry, driving greater mobile media consumption and paving the way for additional shifts in the way people already use their smartphones. What could this mean for the mobile industry at large? Across the board, having the iPhone support LTE could be a boost to LTE adoption. At the moment, wireless networks such as Verizon which already have a robust infrastructure in place to support LTE stand to gain an advantage. But as other carriers continue to build up their own LTE capabilities, such an advantage may be fleeting.

What can be said with certainty is that whatever changes Apple introduces with the next iPhone, it will reshape not just the mobile media landscape but the very complexion of the digital media industry at large.

[Source: comScore]

Italy Fastest Growing EU5 Online Video Market

comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR), a leader in measuring the digital world, today released a study from the comScore Video Metrix service, indicating that 24 million Italians watched an average of 144 videos in May 2012. The Italian online video audience grew by 27 percent over the past year, making it the fastest growing online video market in EU5 (France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK) accounted for 90 percent (21.7 million) of the online video audience, making Google Sites the top online video property in May 2012.

Italian full press release:

Milano, Italia, 23 Luglio, 2012 – comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR) e Demoskopea, Partner esclusivo di comScore in Italia, hanno diffuso i risultati di un’indagine sul consumo di video online da casa e lavoro a Maggio 2012 nei principali mercati europei (EU5 – Francia, Germania, Italia, Regno Unito e Spagna).

La metodologia Unified Digital Measurement (UDM) di comScore offre una soluzione per la misurazione dell’audience digitale con un approccio standard in tutto il mondo. Alla base della misurazione le rilevazioni person-level del panel globale comScore (2 milioni di persone nel mondo, di cui più di 30.000 in Italia) combinate con metriche censuarie (lato server). La tecnologia comScore permette di misurare gli spettatori unici, il numero di video e la durata della visione, tracciando il consumo del singolo video indipendentemente dal sito che lo ospita.

“L’Italia sta recuperando terreno molto velocemente sia per quanto riguarda la dimensione dell’audience sia per il numero di video visti. Considerando la composizione socio demografica degli spettatori e il progressivo arricchimento dell’offerta di video di qualità crediamo che tale crescita sia destinata a durare nel tempo e a modificare profondamente i comportamenti di fruizione dei contenuti video” ha commentato Fabrizio Angelini, AD di Demoskopea.

Rispetto al maggio 2011 l’Italia fa registrare una crescita del numero di spettatori unici di video online del 27%, la più alta in EU5, e un aumento sensibile anche del numero di video per spettatore (+15%).

Video Online nei Paesi Europei Selezionati
Maggio 2012
Audience Totale; +15 Anni di età – Casa e Lavoro
Fonte: comScore Video Metrix
mag-11 mag-12 A/A mag-11 mag-12 A/A mag-11 mag-12 A/A
Francia 35.772 37.869 6% 150 159 6% 15,0 17,9 19%
Germania 42.377 43.657 3% 207 218 5% 21,9 29,0 32%
Italia 18.898 24.016 27% 125 144 15% 14,2 15,3 8%
Spagna 18.014 20.711 15% 170 185 9% 20,1 18,8 -7%
Regno Unito 29.494 31.874 8% 181 309 71% 19,3 32,0 66%

Note: A/A, indica la crescita percentuale anno su anno

Il solo YouTube copre il 90% dell’audience video in Italia
Gli spettatori unici fatti registrare da YouTube nel mese di Maggio 2012 in Italia sono stati 21,7 milioni, facendo di Google Sites la prima video property in Italia a maggio 2012. Tra i Canali locali (italiani) Partner di YouTube è quello RAI ad aver registrato il maggior numero di spettatori con un valore superiore a 3,2 milioni di spettatori unici (escluso il contributo degli User Generated Content).

Video Online Italia – Top 5 YouTube Partners
Maggio 2012
Audience Totale; +15 Anni di età – Casa e Lavoro
Fonte: comScore Video Metrix
Total Online Video Audience 24.016 21.733
1 VEVO @ YouTube 8.645
2 Warner Music @ YouTube 5.632
3 rai @ YouTube 3.255
4 Bigpoint @ YouTube 2.366
5 Believe @ YouTube 2.191

Note: i dati per i Partner di YouTube non includono i “claimed UGC”

[Source: comScore]

Update Audiweb:

Da oggi sarà possibile misurare la fruizione dei contenuti video presenti su internet grazie a Audiweb Objects Video, l’estensione del sistema di rilevazione Audiweb.

Con Audiweb Objects Video viene introdotta una nuova metrica di misurazione: lastream viewovvero la fruizione effettiva di un video da parte di un utente attraverso un player, che consente di determinare le opportunità di contatto/esposizione pubblicitaria (OTS) ai contenuti video.

Ciò è possibile attraverso l’introduzione di uno speciale ‘tag’ nei contenuti, in grado di interagire con il meter dei componenti del panel. I dati vengono poi sottoposti agli stessi processi di fusione e ponderazione applicati a tutti gli altri dati di audience.

Audiweb offre report sulla quantità dei video visualizzati, sul tempo speso in media e su tutte le informazioni socio-demografiche degli utenti. Questo metodo consentirà in futuro di misurare anche le audience originate da applicativi e oggetti, come, ad esempio, le applicazioni flash e social e i siti sviluppati in HTML5 che non possono essere misurati attraverso la metrica delle “pagine visualizzate”.

Il lancio di Audiweb Objects Video si colloca in un momento di grande espansione del mercato del digital video advertising, stimato in crescita del 93% nel 2012 (fonte AssoComunicazione) e dell’interesse crescente da parte degli utenti verso le categorie di siti che contengono o propongono contenuti video, che in un anno registrano un aumento pari al 19% del tempo speso (fonte Audiweb by Nielsen, maggio 2012).

Enrico Gasperini, presidente di Audiweb ha dichiarato:

“La rete è per sua natura in continua evoluzione e i siti vengono sempre più realizzati con tecnologie non misurabili con la metrica delle “pagine viste”. Fin dalla prima fase del sistema Audiweb abbiamo sviluppato una metodologia ‘ibrida’  innovativa che è stata poi adottata anche in altri Paesi. Ora con Audiweb Objetcs Video estendiamo il sistema per offrire al mercato una ricerca che, per la prima volta, aggiunge nuove metriche più complete con cui misurare le audience. Il prossimo obiettivo sarà l’estensione della ricerca a nuove tipologie di applicazioni e agli schermi tablet e mobile”

La rilevazione, realizzata in partnership con Nielsen, è iniziata dal mese di gennaio 2012, e i dati sulla fruizione di video online da parte degli italiani sono disponibili da oggi su Audiweb Database, per il planning database, e su Audiweb View, per i report mensili.

I primi editori che hanno aderito al servizio sono il Gruppo Editoriale L’Espresso (La Repubblica TV ), Il Sole 24 ore (De Agostini by Day e Sky), Rai, RCS (Corriere della Sera, Gazzetta dello Sport e Lei Web).

In base ai dati rilevati nel mese di maggio 2012, sono 6,3 milioni gli utenti che hanno consumato almeno un contenuto video su uno dei siti degli editori iscritti, con un totale di 49,8 milioni di stream views (video fruiti nel mese) e una media di 30 minuti e 56 secondi di tempo speso per persona nella fruizione di contenuti video online.

[Source: Audiweb]

5 Years Later: A Look Back at the Rise of the iPhone

June 29th marks the 5 year anniversary of the first iPhone release, an important milestone not only for Apple but for the entire mobile industry. This revolutionary device set the stage for explosive growth in the smartphone market, drastically changing the complexion of the mobile industry and, consequently, the entire digital landscape in just a few short years. In July 2007, barely 9 million Americans owned a smartphone – representing just 4 percent of the entire mobile market. Today nearly 110 million Americans own a smartphone and by the end of the year smartphone owners will become the new mobile majority in the U.S.


Today, iOS ranks as the second largest smartphone platform in the U.S. after Android, commanding 31.9 percent share of the market with its 35.1 million iPhone owners in May according to comScore MobiLens. During the last five years, Apple has introduced five different versions of the iPhone and extended its reach beyond AT&T to other major carriers, including Verizon and Sprint. A more detailed look at the iPhone ecosystem by device generation found that nearly 3 in every 4 iPhone owners currently uses the iPhone 4 or iPhone 4S, with the iPhone 4 accounting for the largest overall share at nearly 40 percent of iOS smartphones in May 2012. The original iPhone released on June 29, 2007 now accounts for just 2 percent of current iOS smartphone owners, with new generations of the device making the original virtually obsolete.


As with many consumer electronics products, early adopters of the iPhone skewed male, young to middle age and wealthier than the average consumer. In 2007, 61 percent of iPhone owners were male, more than half were between the ages of 25-44 and 48 percent had a household income of $100,000 or greater.

As the iPhone reached critical mass and gained wider consumer adoption – supported in part by the introduction of new device generations, lower price points, availability through more wireless carriers and a general consumer movement toward smartphone adoption – iPhone owners, too, have evolved. In May 2012, females accounted for a much more prominent share of iPhone owners at 47 percent vs. 53 percent males. Though people age 25-44 still represent a strong percentage of the iPhone user base at 46 percent, the youngest and oldest age segments have witnessed the largest increases in overall share. And while those earning $100,000 and greater still command a hefty portion of the audience, users with income levels of $50,000-$75,000 represented the fastest growing audience income segment, now accounting for nearly 1 in every 5 iPhone owners.


The smartphone market, with the iPhone at the center of it, has witnessed incredible growth and evolution over the last five years, creating a strong foundation for the rise of the mobile media consumer and creating value for players across the ecosystem. With consumer adoption on the rise and the continued integration of new, innovative technologies, we can only imagine what the next five years will bring. But despite how quickly leadership positions can change in this market, something tells me that iPhone will still be blazing new trails into the future…

[Source: ComScore]