Monthly mobile data traffic in Asia-Pacific is almost as high as the rest of the world combined, according to Hootsuite and We Are Social’s Digital in 2017 report.
Examining data on social media and digital trends from 238 countries, the study found that 4.12 billion gigabytes of mobile data were consumed monthly in APAC, compared to 4.88 billion in total for all other regions.
In addition, APAC has seen a 25% year-on-year rise in active social media users, which translates to 303 million people, and a 35% year-on-year hike in active mobile social users, representing 375 million consumers.
More than 1.5 billion people across APAC now use social media on a monthly basis, 95% of whom access social via mobile devices—the highest ratio in the world.
"One of the greatest opportunities of a digitally connected world is the ability to have immediate conversations, wherever and whenever customers want," said Roger Graham, Hootsuite APAC senior director, growth and marketing.
"Social media not only enables organisations to amplify [their] brand, but also build trust, credibility and human relationships at scale. It is now as much the responsibility of the top executive as the social media manager."
The report compiles data from the world's largest studies of online behaviour, conducted by organisations including GlobalWebIndex, GSMA Intelligence, Statista, and Akamai. It found that 50% of the world is now connected to the internet, and that social media has grown 21% globally in the last 12 months.
In terms of social-media penetration by country, 11 APAC markets are above the global average, with South Korea, Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong making up four of the top five.
Moreover, regarding time spent on social media, the Philippines leads the globe, with Malaysia and Indonesia also in the upper echelons.
Simon Kemp, We Are Social global consultant, said: "Given this latest data, it's probably time for us to stop referring to social as 'new media', and integrate it more seamlessly into our day-to-day activities."
A version of this article was first published by Campaign Asia-Pacific.