Smartphone penetration reached 42% across the UK, France, Italy, Spain and Germany (EU5) in October, compared to 39% in the US.

The data from comScore shows that Symbian is the dominant operating system in the EU5 with 32% market share, compared to 28% for Android and 21% for iOS.

Furhter underlining the importance for retailers to establish a strong mobile presence, comScore found that 75% of smartphone owners used their phone to browse the web, use an app or download content.

A total of 13.6m people accessed a retail site using a smartphone in the EU5, with Germany the fastest growing market increasing 112%.

Young males are driving m-commerce, as the chart below shows.

Interestingly the most popular m-commerce activity was accessing a bank account (20.3% of users), which indicates that smartphone owners trust security on the platform.

Visiting an online retailer (13.9%) was the second most popular activity, followed by accessing electronic payments (12.1%) and looking up shopping guides (10.9%).

The report also shows that smartphones are increasingly becoming part of the in-store shopping experience.

Over a fifth (21.8%) of smartphones owners had used their device to take a photo of a product, while 14.9% had called or texted a friend about a product and 10.9% had scanned a barcode.

In terms of the share of overall internet traffic, mobile now accounts for 3.2% across the EU5 while tablets take up 1.4%.

Of the five nations, mobile’s share of traffic is highest in the UK at 5.1%, with Spain the second highest at 2.7%