CNNIC Bi-Annual Report: Internet Insights from China
The report reviews popular usage of Internet, and we compared the overall data as well as mobile data to measure changes over 6 and 12 months. Below, we share some of the latest figures and insights revealed by the report.
Chinese Internet Users and Penetration Rate
According to the report, China now boasts 648.8 million Internet users, or a 2.1% increase in penetration. However, the growth rate for Internet penetration has continued to slow down from last year’s 3.7%.
The slowing of growth is explained by the fact that there are more people offline due to fundamental problems, such as “not understanding computers and Internet” or being “too old/young to use Internet.” New users in 2014 are predominantly comprised of students, which accounts for 38.8% of the new user population. As students mostly go online at school, we saw a comeback of desktop devices within new users.
China Mobile Internet Usage
Mobile devices reign supreme with higher usage growth than desktops and laptops across all users. Tablet usage boomed in 2014, with a higher growth rate than mobile devices. Last but not least, with Internet TVs and Internet-enabled set-top boxes becoming more accessible and commonplace, the report started tracking TV as an Internet device, which is already used by 15.6% of Internet users.
Total mobile Internet users is now at 556.8 million, which covers 85.8% of the total Internet user base, a 4% year-on-year growth from 2013, as compared to 6.5% year-on-year growth in 2013 from the previous year, indicating a slowdown of growth.
China Blog and Email Usage
Microblog and email usage shows a decline in both the last 6 months and 12 months, while mobile email usage decreased in the last 6 months, but year-on-year change remains positive.
China Travel Booking Usage
Online travel booking continues to grow overall with 22.7% in the last year, but its growth has been noticeably explosive on the mobile platform, which grew by 78.1% in the last 6 months and 194.5% in the past 12 months.
Instant messaging further solidified itself as the king of Internet usage, with over 90% penetration on mobile devices and all devices combined, and steady year-on-year growth.
It is also noted that this year’s report no longer covers social networking as a common usage application, as there had been a continuous decline in social numbers in the last few reports.
Train ticket purchase continues to be the most popular use of travel booking services online. Flight bookings had a steady increase from 12.1% use in 2013 to 13.0% in 2014.