Online video activities are outpacing the growth in popularity of other digital media, while social networking is quickly becoming the dominant online behavior globally, according to the latest “Face of the Web,” Ipsos Insight’s annual study of Internet and Technology trends.
Internet users have grown accustomed to streaming and downloading music in the past three years, and now it’s apparently online video’s turn. Participation in online video activities is climbing quickly in many developed markets of the world, and that growth is most prevalent within the US, Ipsos said.
Well over one-third of recent adult US internet users (36%) have watched a TV show or other video stream online, compared with 28% at the end of 2005, and three-quarters of those users have done so in the previous 30 days, Ipsos found.
“Increasing penetration of broadband access and PC ownership globally signals that the PC will begin to really assert itself as a ‘second screen’ within the household,” said Brian Cruikshank, executive vice president & managing director of Ipsos Insight’s Technology & Communications practice
At least as impressive as the growing trend of digital video behaviors is that of social networking, Ipsos also said.
Overall, among the 12 surveyed global markets, about one in five adults have ever visited a social networking website, and an equal percentage (20%) of regular internet users have visited these types of websites in the previous 30 days.
In the US, about one in five American adults (24%) have ever visited a social networking website.
In most global markets, at least two-thirds of all internet users who have ever visited social-networking sites have done so within the previous 30 days.
Leading all other markets in social networking is South Korea: Half (49%) of all adults there have visited at least one of these websites in the past, while over half of all online adults have visited a social networking website in the previous 30 days.
The popularity of social networking in South Korea is largely attributed to Cyworld, one of the oldest and most successful social networking sites in the world; some 18 million people in South Korea have accounts with Cyworld – roughly 30% of the country’s entire population.
About the study: The Face of the Web 2006 study was conducted in November and December 2006 among a random sample of 6,553 adults in urban Brazil, Canada, urban China, France, Germany, urban India, Japan, urban Mexico, urban Russia, South Korea, the UK, and the US.