A majority of Australians would rather go without television than their smartphone, while the number of users using their mobile phone for just calls and SMS has fallen to just 9%, according to a new survey.
The Australian Mobile Phone Lifestyle Index was conducted by the Australian Interactive Media Industry Association and conducted by strategic research analysts Complete the Picture.
It combined a survey of 1459 respondents with Australian Bureau of Statistic Census demographic data and socioeconomic status data from the Household Expenditure Survey.
The figures show that 61% of Australians would rather go without television than their mobile phone, while 50% would rather go without their PC or tablet than their mobile. Meanwhile, 30% would rather do without their car than their mobile phone.
Meanwhile, a little over one-third of Australians (34%) have already ditched the landline in favour of just their mobile phone, with a further 48% saying that while they still have a landline connected, they use it rarely.
Another key finding is that growth in the Australian smartphone market is close to a saturation point. Around 89% of Australians now owning a smartphone, up slightly from 88% last year, and up significantly from 67% in 2011.
“The recorded ownership figures will also vary depending on whether it is being measured as a percentage of the overall number of mobile phone subscriptions in Australia (higher than the total number of Australians) or as a percentage of all Australians or just adult Australians,” the report cautions.
The ownership rate for smartphones (88%) are now higher than for either computers (88%) or tablets (60%), with 53% owning all three devices. However, if given the choice between the three devices, 50% would choose their mobile phone, 34% would pick their computer, and just 16% would pick their tablet.
Despite this, when it comes to buying online, many still opt for their desktop or laptop. Around 90% of PC owners have used their computers to make a purchase and 75% of tablet owners have used a tablet to buy a product. In contrast, the percentage of mobile phone users to use their devices to make a purchase is lower, at 60%.
Of those making purchases from their mobile phone, the most common thing to buy is tickets (including movie and plane tickets) at 60%. This is followed by digital content (54%), clothes/shoes/jewellery (41%), books (25%), services (16%), consumer electronics (15%) and groceries (11%).
Finally, the report looked at the controversial topic of whether users prefer mobile websites or apps. It found 7% of users mostly use websites and 28% predominantly use websites.
In contrast, 3% use apps exclusively and 24% prefer to use apps. Around 25% of users use both equally, while 12% opt to use neither.