By Shane McGinley
Popularity of smartphones rises, according to research on trends in the Middle East
The number of mobile phone ad impressions in the UAE has surged by more than 50 percent, as the devices become the medium of choice for consumers accessing the Internet.
The Nielsen Global Online Survey has found that 43 percent of Middle East consumers plan to use a mobile phone to access the Internet over the coming year.
By comparison, 29 percent plan to use a handheld multimedia device and 24 percent reported that they will be opting to use an in home video game system.
The growing popularity of mobile phones has opened up opportunities for advertisers in the Middle East, according to a research by InMobi, the world’s largest independent mobile ad network.
The research focused on mobile advertising trends in the Middle East between July 2010 and October 2010 and discovered that mobile ad impressions in the region grew 51 percent to 752 million monthly impressions.
Smartphones were used by 40 percent of those to view the ads impressions and Nokia devices proved most popular for two thirds of users.
“Middle East mobile ad growth continues to pace with the global insurgence of mobile. With the current growth trends, this market will break the 1 billion monthly impressions level in just a few months,” said James Lamberti, vice president of global research and marketing at InMobi.
“The region represents a very interesting ecosystem with a young, mobile dedicated population driving mobile media consumption and an emerging developer community eyeing globalization,” he added.
The popularity of the devices will be felt in the region’s cash registers as research by the Nielsen Company also found that 21 percent of online consumers in the Middle East said they intend to splash out on a new Smartphone in the coming year, while 27 percent are planning to buy a handheld multimedia device and 24 percent intend to purchase a Netbook.For all the latest tech news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.