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Smartphone users are not really different

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Six out of the top 10 apps accessed on smartphones across markets are the same

MUMBAI, INDIA: Smartphones today are an all encompassing multi-tasking handheld device made even more indispensable by the applications that can be installed on it. Looking at the state of proliferation of advanced and affordable smartphones, we can only expect the need and use of applications to increase as we move forward.

We would expect higher popularity for applications catering to a region or more locally, but in reality, the top applications seem to be sans borders. Based on their usage, smartphone users, irrespective of their nationality seem to exhibit similar behavior and tend to behave like a homogenous group. According to Informate Mobile Intelligence, smartphone users from India and the developing markets are no different from their counterparts in the US - at least when it comes to apps on their smartphones.

Data from Informate SmartPhone panels across India, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand and the US [March 2013] indicate that six out of the top 10 apps accessed are the same.

And, of the six apps, except for Facebook, all are Google properties - Google Play Store, Google Maps, Gmail, Google Search and YouTube.

Interestingly, the data also points to regional variations that exist, with WhatsApp messenger being more popular in India, Malaysia and Indonesia, while in Thailand LINE messenger is much more accepted. Similarly, Pandora and Amazon apps are much more popular in the US.

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