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Today's UK mobile market


Smart phones: 63 Million. Feature phones: 16.1 Million

smart phones

Mobile phones have become one the most effective ways of engaging with customers. Mobiles and in particular smart phones virtually encompass all other marketing channels as traditional forms of advertising can be accessed via smart phones i.e. Advertising, TV and radio etc… Across the entire marketing mix, spend on traditional forms of media have been exceeded by next-generation digital advertising, where the smart phone sits right in the middle.

In the UK, at the end of 2016 there were 79.14M active mobile devices and only 56.5M actual mobile users. This suggests that a good number of people are probably using multiple devices for personal and work use. Out of the 79.14M active mobile devices, 80% are smart phones and 20% are feature phones. And for the majority of people it is not uncommon for them to have their smart phones by their sides for more than 16 hours, and they are the first and last thing they engage with everyday.

For businesses targeting smart phone users via an app, it’s imperative to know what operating system they’re using, especially if the initial investment in the app is limited to focusing on Apple’s iOS or Android. At the end of 2016 in the UK, Android continued to dominate the smart phone arena with a market share of 54%, ahead of Apple on 34.7% and Windows 10.1%. But the largest tech company in the world is on the march and continues to increase market share at Androids expense and by 2020, Apple’s market share is expected to be 40.2%, whilst Android’s is estimated to fall to 50.2%

To businesses, these combined factors make the screen on every smart phone valuable real estate, especially if they have the marketing budget to invest in creative rich media content. Consequently, smart phones have become one of the most engaging channels for businesses to reach their target audiences. However, while the majority of businesses focus on smart phone features, there are still 16.1M feature phone users to potentially consider, which presents a real opportunity for businesses using SMS.

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