Feature phones more popular than tablets for browsing


Which device do you mainly browse the web from? graph of japanese statisticsA recent survey from goo Research, reported on by japan.internet.com, looked at web site viewing, the seventh time this regular survey has been performed, and found that tablets were surprisingly (to me at least) less popular than feature phones when it came to selecting a main surfing device.


Between the 9th and 11th of April 2013 1,090 mobile phone- (including smartphone-) using members of the goo Research monitor group completed a private internet-based questionnaire. 57.6% of the sample were female, 3.1% in their teens, 23.1% in their twenties, 37.1% in their thirties, 25.5% in their forties, and 11.2% aged fifty or older.

I’m beginning to seriously consider using a tablet as my main tool for home, replacing my netbook, although I do need to find a decent text editor with macros in order to produce all the tables I use. If anyone has any good recommendations, I’m all ears. And no, Emacs for Android is most certainly not a good recommendation!

In Q1SQ1, I’d like to know more about why about half the smartphone users choose it as their primary surfing device, but only one in five tablet users do so. I suspect it is something to do with the smartphone being more portable thus usable on the train when commuting, and perhaps a lot of tablets are wifi only, so have less connectivity.

Research results

Q1: Do you also have a computer (PC, Mac, etc)? (Sample size=1,090)

Yes (to SQ1)94.7%
No (to SQ2)5.3%

Q1SQ1: Which device do you mainly browse the web from? (Sample size=1,032)

Legacy feature phone4.7%

Note that in a separate survey conducted at the start of March 2013, smartphone ownership was at 42.8% and tablets at 14.6%.

Q1SQ2: Do you plan to buy a computer in the future? (Sample size=58)

Plan to buy20.7%
Want one, but no plan to buy yet65.5%
Don’t want one13.8%
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  1. janne said,
    April 27, 2013 @ 09:43

    a lot of tablets are ten inch size, which is just too
    large to use comfortably on the train. But I’ve seen quite a noticeable increase in smaller tablets on my commute this winter.

    editor: good luck finding one with macro capability. the closest I could get is probably Vim (as part of a POSIX package). A tablet just isn’t useful for that kind of thing unless you add a real keyboard. And at that point a small netbook or similar is probably easier to use on the go.

    • Ken Y-N said,
      April 29, 2013 @ 17:18

      That’s the problem, non-alphanumeric characters like angle brackets are a pain on standard soft keyboards, and if I get a separate Bluetooth keyboard then the problem is supporting the screen. I don’t think things like the Microsoft Surface keyboard would work too well on laps?

      Perhaps if I could find a stock clearance sale and pick up a cheap netbook or two before they disappear? Where in Osaka would you go for that sort of thing? Yodobashi Camera still asks full price for the one or two netbooks they have on display. Last week I saw a colleague of mine with a Panasonic B5 netbook lookalike, the first time I saw such a model. It was a quite recent model (2011?) very blocky black – reminded me of a ThinkPad styling. Barring the no doubt eye-watering price, I could go such a device.

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