The world has fallen in love with their smart phones and tablets. People talk about having an emotional connection with their devices. The iphone 5 promo video described it as a “unique relationship”.

Keith Nation from ORM London says this is because: “They are always on you and they are always on”. American advertising consultant Cindy Gallop said at a recent Guardian marketing summit that: “People turn on their phones all the time to get little pellets of love. They want to see that people want to be in touch with them”. 

Our appetite for all things mobile is insatiable. Technology research firm Gartner estimates that 70% of devices sold worldwide in 2012 will be “smart devices” (smartphones and tablets). It predicts a total of 1.2bn smartphones and tablets could be sold worldwide in 2013 and forecasts a staggering 39 million to be sold by 2016. 

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1. Mobile devices are the new desk space: 

In the UK 56% of the population own a smart phone. Its purpose, to take and make calls, is almost secondary says Keith Nation from ORM.  He believes it is: “an infinitely customisable device that will help you in business, get fit and stay social”.  

Recent research supports his view claiming that users with email on their phones check for new messages 20 times a day, adding as much as two hours to each working day. In a separate study the more than 50% of people check their emails while on holiday.  

2. Web traffic from smartphones and tablets has risen dramatically:

ORM states that web traffic from mobile devices has more than doubled in the last 18 months.  

Keth Nation said:

The data [we have collected from our clients] shows that 18 months ago 5-10% of their customer traffic came from mobile devices. Now we are seeing more than double that figure with more than 20%+ visiting their sites from mobiles.

He believes that this is only going to increaseThis trend is being seen across the UK market with experts stating that 28% of the UK’s internet usage is from a mobile phone.

3. People have a deeper engagement with their mobile device:

Research by MediaCom shows that people have greater engagement with the web when they access it from a mobile device.

It found that after just 30 seconds of interaction with a mobile ad, the likelihood of a purchase increased by 6%. This increased again by 20% if a user is engaged by the ad for 90 seconds. Facebook reported similar results.

It found people who make their first purchase on mobile are 2.5X more likely to make a second purchase and they spend 8X as much money with a retailer over time. 

4. Email conversion rates are higher on mobiles:

Across industry, across the world there is a growing trend that shows people are accessing their email via their mobile devices. Latest research shows that 20% of emails are read on mobile devices. 

Earlier this year an ITDMS report said the vast majority of respondents (90%) to its survey said they can access their work e-mail accounts from their smartphones and two in three check their inbox when they get up and go to bed on a regular basis. In April 2012, the email open rate on mobile overtook desktop and web and has been accelerating since.  

5. The rise and rise of the app:

You only have to look at popular columns like those in the Guardian by Stuart Dredge, which reviews up to 20 of the latest iPhone, iPad, android apps each week – to realise apps are serious business.  

Whether you want something to entertain, inform or assist you, it’s there to be found on the app store. Last month Apple announced that a record 35 billion apps had been downloaded.

Mobile applications are often seen as the domain of the B2C market but they are equally relevant to the B2B market.  

6. Mobile and contactless payment:

Some predict that the biggest drive for mobile phone usage will be contactless payments. According to The Wall’s Chris Reed, MasterCard discovered that spending increased by 30% in the 12 months after a customer first started using contactless payments.

It was particularly notable that the young and affluent were spending this way. Currently in the USA 50% of consumers now use their mobiles to check and compare prices.