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Hosted Exchange - Mobile Email Usage Grows, But Email Usage Shrinks

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January 16, 2012

Mobile Email Usage Grows, But Email Usage Shrinks

By Gary Kim
Contributing Editor

Nearly 90 million U.S. mobile phone users used mobile email for work or personal purposes during the three-month period ending November 2011, says comScore (News - Alert). Of smartphone owners, 78 percent used email in that period.

The study
also showed a decline in visits to web-based email destinations, and spent less time on such sites. In November 2010, more than 153 million people visited web-based email providers, decreasing six percent from the previous year.

In terms of engagement, overall time spent in the email category declined nine percent, while total pages viewed dropped 15 percent.

The decline in usage was greatest among users between the ages of 12 to 17. The number of visitors from this age segment declined 24 percent, while engagement fell by half as total minutes decreased 48 percent and total pages dropped 53 percent.

Engagement also declined among users 18 to 54, as a general shift in email behavior was evident across most segments.

In contrast, usage increased among those 55 and over. The number of 55 to 64 year olds accessing web-based email increased 15 percent with similar gains in engagement, while those age 65+ experienced gains across all three metrics as well.

One would suspect those declines in usage are related directly to substitution of other communication modes, ranging from text messaging to instant messaging to social network posts.

But one would also expect a continuing shift to mobile access modes, since use of mobile devices for Internet purposes will eclipse desktop modes within several years.

Despite such declines, however, it should be noted that email remains one of the most popular activities on the web, reaching more than 70 percent of the U.S online population each month, comScore notes.

Year over year, mobile email usage grew 28 percent, adding an additional 19.5 million users.

Analysis of the frequency of mobile email usage found that the majority of users accessed email almost every day from their mobile device, representing mobile email.

About 64 percent of mobile email users access mobile email every day, and that segment of the user base is growing the fastest, at 33 percent, year over year.

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Gary Kim (News - Alert) is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Gary’s articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Stefanie Mosca


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