Smartphones, other mobile devices boost social networks

Twitter exec says use of microblogging site on mobile devices is growing rapidly; survey finds U.S. marketers taking notice

Sony Ericsson's tiny XPERIA X10 Mini Pro smartphone.

Sony Ericsson's tiny XPERIA X10 Mini Pro smartphone.

There's mounting evidence that smartphones and mobile devices are increasing the use of social networks and microblogging sites.

Twitter CEO Evan Williams earlier this month blogged that 46% of active Twitter users regularly use a mobile device to tweet.

In the post, Williams said that the number of users accessing Twitter on mobile devices had jumped 62 per cent since mid-April. Overall during that period, the number of people using Twitter rose 27 per cent, from 106 million to 145 million.

The company's Twitter for iPhone , Twitter for BlackBerry and Twitter for Android apps have helped fuel the growth of mobile tweets, he noted. Even with the mobile growth, Williams did note that 78 per cent of Twitter activity originated on desktop systems during August. Meanwhile 14 per cent of users accessing Twitter during the month did so via the mobile Twitter Web site, m.twitter.com.

Meanwhile a survey conducted by PRWeek and MS&L Group found that U.S.-based marketers also believe mobile social networks will be important to their businesses in the coming year. When asked which social media efforts would have the biggest effect on their companies and brands, 17 per cent of 262 respondents said the greatest effect would be through the use of social media on mobile platforms. Further, 12 per cent of the 262 surveyed said the biggest impact would come from greater use of mobile, location-based social networks.

The survey results were released on 8 September.

For years, marketers of all types have been interested in using location data on smartphones to give mobile users marketing and other pertinent information when they are close to a retail outlet. The controversy over Facebook's Places and user privacy notwithstanding, the connection between social networks and mobile devices seems secure.

For example, ComScore reported in June that social networking apps are the fastest growing mobile apps in the U.S.

From April 2009 to April 2010, the number of unique users in the social networking category grew 240 per cent, reaching 14.5 million, placing it third behind only weather and map applications, ComScore said. Another 30 million mobile users visited social networking sites via browsers as well, ComScore said at the time.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags telecommunicationconsumer electronicsMobile and WirelesssmartphonesPhonesWeb 2.0 and Web Appstwittermobile

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Matt Hamblen

Computerworld (US)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?