Australians spend more time on tablets than on PC – It’s a first!

Posted by Christian Manie On November 24, 2015 Media Releases

IAB Australia and Nielsen release third and final Mobile Ratings Report

SYDNEY, 24 NOV. 2015: The September edition of the IAB Australia and Nielsen Mobile Ratings Report has revealed that for the first time, Australians 18+ spent more time browsing content or interacting with apps on a tablet device, than on a PC. Smartphones still remain the preferred device overall though, with average time per person among the active internet population 18+ spent either browsing content or on applications on a smartphone, at just under 35 hours per person.


According to Alice Manners, IAB Australia’s CEO, growth in mobile audiences and increases in time spent on a mobile screen, is resulting in a shift of focus for brands and advertisers.

“Companies have invested heavily in desktop, but as consumers increasingly turn to mobile devices to view and engage with content, companies have had to shift their focus and investment to this medium. This preview information is the first step in verifying their efforts and investments, and helps companies plan for the future,” said Manners.

Entertainment – Video Streaming
Smartphones are the dominant mobile device selected for viewing video / movie content, recording a unique audience of 8.6 million compared to 4.8 million on a tablet. However, once engaged, Australians 18+ spent just over two hours consuming video content on a tablet compared to just over one hour on a smartphone.

The video streaming category is dominated by YouTube, with Netflix leading from a video on demand perspective and Yahoo7 TV (PLUS7) leading the catch-up services on mobile devices. Video streaming services are spread across two entertainment subcategories –video / movies and broadcast media.

Looking to the U.S. market, 78% of American smartphone users accessed a video site or application during September 2015, compared to 68% of Australians. Americans spent nearly double the amount of time per person than Australians.

More Financial Activity on Mobile Devices
In September 2015, close to eight million Australians 18+ used their smartphone for their banking needs and three million Australians 18+ did the same on tablet devices. In terms of the biggest unique audience, Commonwealth Bank is the leader in this category on both smartphone and tablet devices, followed by ANZ. Over 80% of the active reach on smartphones for the top four banks – Commonwealth Bank, ANZ, NAB and Westpac – is generated by their respective applications.


Australian Smartphone Engagement Still Has Room to Grow
Australia is seeing impressive growth in smartphone and tablet usage, although we continue to trail other leading markets in relation to time spent browsing the web or using applications.

Head of Nielsen’s Media Industry Group, Monique Perry, said if you look at content, there are real divides in categories that lead compared to the U.S. and others that have huge opportunity to grow.

“Some categories in particular have shown real leadership in providing consumers with a sophisticated yet simple and reliable mobile offering. Categories such as government and finance really lead compared to the U.S., whereas categories such as News, e-Commerce and Music will no doubt continue to grow their audience percentages to align with what we are seeing abroad,” said Perry.


“The launch of Mobile Ratings data validates efforts and educates the industry even more about consumers’ mobile behaviours. We believe we will see real growth in audience numbers with the confidence these industry metrics give companies to further invest in this space and appeal to the consumer experience,” added Perry.

News & Information Anytime, Anywhere
The IAB Australia and Nielsen Mobile Ratings September report found that News and Information content rankings for smartphone and tablet use are dominated by the same brands that have historically been strong in desktop rankings. toped the news rankings on both smartphone and tablet devices for the largest unique audience in September, 2015.

“The News & Information category continues to see growth on mobile devices, so much so that Australians 18+ now prefer to consume their news and information content on their smartphones over any other digital device. We expect to see this category continue to surge on mobile devices,” added Manners.

Final Preview Report: Next Step Is Digital Ratings Monthly
The release of the Nielsen Mobile Ratings report preview data is the first phase of major upgrades to the digital audience measurement system in Australia. This September edition of the report is the third and final edition. The next step for the industry will be the launch of Digital Ratings Monthly, early in 2016. Digital Ratings Monthly will give the industry smartphone and tablet panel data fully-fused with Nielsen’s home/work PC panel data and tagged website data.

Digital Ratings Monthly will be the base for further development which will see Nielsen transition to daily delivery of digital audience data through Digital Content Ratings, which is slated for launch in mid-2016.

The Mobile Ratings Report results are based on the mobile panel which consists of 2,000 iOS and Android smartphone users and 500 iOS and Android tablet users aged 18+. This panel is nationally representative of Australian smartphone and tablet internet users, has individual privacy agreements in place with all panellists and passively measures the online behaviour of panellists on their mobile device through an on-device meter (Android) or proxy solution (iOS).

The panels provide granular data on a monthly basis that can be used by media buyers and sellers to better understand the mobile consumer and assess the opportunities available in what is now a significant media channel. It includes audiences from both web browsers on mobile devices and for the first time, mobile applications.

The full Mobile Ratings Report can be downloaded here.

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About The Interactive Advertising Bureau
The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) Limited is the peak trade association for online advertising in Australia and was incorporated in July 2010. As one of over 43 IAB offices globally, and with a rapidly growing membership, IAB Australia’s principal objective is to support and enable the media and marketing industry to ensure that they thrive in the digital economy.

The role of the IAB is to work with its members and the broader advertising and marketing industry to assist marketers to identify how best to employ online as part of their marketing strategy, to better target and engage their customers and build their brands.

By addressing the core pillars of growth of the online advertising industry – simplified and standard online audience measurement, research, and online operational standards and guidelines, and regulatory affairs, IAB Australia leverages the skills, experience and commitment of its members to advocate the benefits of online advertising by acting as an authoritative and objective source for all online advertising issues whilst promoting industry-wide best practice.

IAB Australia is a registered not-for-profit organisation; membership fees and revenue generated is invested back into the IAB’s membership benefits such as resources, events, reporting, and industry representation.

For further information about IAB Australia please visit:

About Nielsen
Nielsen N.V. (NYSE: NLSN) is a global performance management company that provides a comprehensive understanding of what consumers Watch and Buy. Nielsen’s Watch segment provides media and advertising clients with Total Audience measurement services across all devices where content — video, audio and text — is consumed. The Buy segment offers consumer packaged goods manufacturers and retailers the industry’s only global view of retail performance measurement.

By integrating information from its Watch and Buy segments and other data sources, Nielsen provides its clients with both world-class measurement as well as analytics that help improve performance.

Nielsen, an S&P 500 company, has operations in over 100 countries that cover more than 90 percent of the world’s population. For more information, visit


Christian Manie