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 newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags mobilesmartphonestwittertelecommunicationPhonesconsumer electronicsMobile and WirelessWeb 2.0 and Web Apps

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 Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?