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The mobile – an increasing presence in our lives

14 December 2021

Mobiles may already be a fixture of daily life for many, but mobile phone usage is still on the rise in Luxembourg and around the world. This change concerns both the private and the professional sphere. Mobile phones are increasingly central to how we work, consume and, of course, communicate.

In January 2021, there were some 93 million more people using mobile phones worldwide than in 2020. The latest annual report from Datareportal, analysing trends in the use of digital solutions including mobiles, shows a steady increase in the number of mobiles and smartphones in our lives. In total, there are 5.22 billion mobile phone users, representing 66.6% of the world's population.

Europe is the region of the world where the highest proportion of citizens owns a mobile. Last year, 86% of Europeans owned a mobile phone. By 2025, the penetration rate in this market is expected to reach 87%. North America ranks second, with about 85% of citizens using mobile phones. Asia-Pacific follows with a penetration rate of 58% in 2020. However, this figure does not include China, Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan.

In Luxembourg, there are 850,000 mobile connections

What about Luxembourg? It turns out that the Grand Duchy is among the countries with the highest penetration rates for mobile connections in the world.

Deloitte's 2018 “Global Mobile Consumer Survey”, involving over 1,000 respondents aged 18 to 75, analysed Luxembourgers’ usage habits with respect to their smartphones.

One of the findings was that Luxembourgers are better equipped than their German, French or Belgian neighbours. 94% of respondents had a smartphone.

According to DataReportal statistics, there are almost 850,000 mobile connections (+2%) in Luxembourg. If we compare this figure to the population, we can see that every inhabitant of the country has more than one mobile device.

What do we use a mobile phone for?

Why are we using mobile phones today? The DataReportal barometer analyses how individuals are using their device. The findings show that citizens are increasingly using their device to go online, rather than just make calls. Globally, 55% of web traffic occurs via smartphones. This is an increase of 4.6% in one year. Worldwide, mobile phone owners aged 16-64 use their mobile phones to connect to the internet for 3 hours and 39 minutes per day on average.

And in Luxembourg? In 2021, the Institut luxembourgeois de régulation (ILR) gave a few indications of mobile usage in the Grand Duchy. The average Luxembourg customer uses 133 minutes of national calls, 23 minutes of international calls, 40 text messages and 4.74 GB of data on their mobile phone per month.

Mobile users mainly use their smartphones for:

  • chatting on messaging apps (90.7%);
  • social media (88.4%), entertainment and video (67.2%), maps (61.8%), music (52.9%), video games (52%), financial services (38.7%), health and fitness (29.4%) and dating (11.4%) apps;
  • online shopping (69.4%).

It is also interesting to note that the use of mobile phones in a professional context is increasing significantly year on year.

Think mobile first

The figures show that mobile phones are becoming an increasingly important part of our lives.

Organisations need to be able to take these facts into account. For economic players, ensuring a mobile-friendly online presence is essential.

This means thinking “mobile first”, i.e. designing online interfaces with the mobile user in mind, in order to guarantee an optimal experience.

How? By offering sites that are ergonomically adapted to mobile use, allowing for a smooth and engaging browsing experience. It’s also a good idea to think about local search, based on voice search, which is increasingly popular with users. With two thirds of internet users likely to make purchases from their mobile, it’s important to improve the online customer journey to make the act of buying online easier.

Providing employees with good tools

Mobile phone usage is becoming increasingly important in the workplace, and the pandemic has only amplified this trend. In this context, it’s important to provide employees with equipment that meets their needs, to facilitate collaboration, and to enable them to work efficiently wherever they are. It’s also essential to ensure that communications are secure and that mobile consumption is kept under control.

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