UK consumers are front runners when it comes to utilizing online services including e-commerce, TV and mobile gaming, the nation’s telecoms regulator claims.
Regular Ofcom research found that 79% of UK consumers ordered goods online in 2010, making them the highest users of e-commerce in Europe. The number visiting online retail sites hit 89% in 2011, and those consumers typically spend more time on the sites than European neighbors at 84 minutes per visit compared to 20 minutes in Italy and Poland.
The figures also show that 27% of UK web users now watch TV programs online every week, an increase of 3% on 2010. The number is boosted by broad availability of online catch-up services offered by several UK broadcasters, however Ofcom’s research shows penetration of digital video recorders (DVR) is also playing a part, with UK ranked second to the US in terms of DVR ownership (36% versus 41% respectively).
Mobile gaming is also more popular in the UK, with 34% of consumers playing games on their handset compared to 16% in France. Growing smartphone penetration – ownership doubled to 46% in the UK in the 18 months to end-August – also sees the country top the lists in terms of mobile browser access, however the regulator’s research shows that UK users are the least likely to use voice over IP services.