For most smartphone owners in India, checking their phones is one of the first and last things they do in a day, according to the third Mobile Consumer report from Deloitte tohmtsy and Touche.
The Deloitte Global Mobile Consumer Survey, 2015, analyses the mobile usage habits of over 2,000 Indian consumers as part of a global survey of 49,000 respondents across 30 countries.
As of June 2015, 86 per cent of those surveyed owned a smartphone, which is 12 per cent higher than in 2013.
According to the research, about 28 per cent of smartphone owners look at their devices at least 11 to 25 times a day, while 22 per cent of them check their phones at least 26 to 50 times a day.
Interestingly, more than 17 per cent of the respondents look at their smartphones at least 51 to 100 times a day.
About 78 per cent of smartphone owners check their phones within 15 minutes of waking up while more than half check within 5 minutes.
This ritual is repeated at the end of the day with more than half (52 per cent) checking their phones within five minutes before going to sleep every night.
The research found that communication services namely mobile IM, social networks are the first thing consumers check on their smartphones in the morning. These are followed by emails and SMS.
The research also found that Indians use their phones throughout the day and monitor various activities.
''From our study, it is evident that smartphone usage has disrupted many common daily activities, and this is here to stay,'' says Santosh Anoo, senior director, Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu India LLP.
''With e-commerce and mobile commerce on the rise, consumers are becoming extremely data hungry. There is huge scope for mobile carriers and network operators to monetize this opportunity. However, the telecom sector will need to optimize networks and infrastructure to meet consumer expectations,'' he adds.
Deloitte India's research shows that the rate of using voice calls and SMS has declined around 20 per cent in the last two years. IM (10 per cent) and VoIP (22 per cent) saw the highest growth in usage penetration.
More than two-thirds of those surveyed are generally unsatisfied with the quality of voice calls. Lower voice calls and higher VoIP usage among early adopters could be consequences of the ''poor sound quality'' for standard voice calls.
The VoIP usage (typically via an app) saw a 22 per cent increase from 26 per cent in 2013 to 48 per cent in 2015. Consumers prefer VoIP for cheaper or free international calls and because of the possibility of making video calls.
Over the years, mobile network has remained the most common way of connecting to the Internet.
Anoo added, ''In the coming years, the quality of network for Internet will be more important than the quality of network for voice calls.'' More than a third of respondents that do not subscribe to 4G are likely to do so in the next 12 months.
At the same time, consumers are increasingly using Wi-Fi at home, at work, or place of study for accessing the Internet. The Wi-Fi usage increased from 43 per cent in 2013 to 45 per cent in 2015 while mobile network usage saw a decline from 57 per cent to 55 per cent during the same period for accessing the Internet on smartphones.
According to the research, phone owners in India are highly interested in in-store mobile payments and mobile money transfers. Given an option of in-store mobile payments, 71 per cent of those surveyed said they will use the facility. Also, 54 per cent of them said they are interested in mobile money transfers.
However, barriers for in-store payments still exist. The most common reason given for not using phone to make a payment was fear about security – cited by 39 per cent of respondents. This was followed by ''I don't see the benefits from using this'' (19 per cent), and ''I don't know any stores that allow this'' (19 per cent).
Among all shopping-related activities, browsing a shopping website / app is the most popular on smartphones, while making an online purchase of a product comes next. While 85 per cent of respondents use their smartphones for browsing shopping websites regularly, only 43 per cent prefer to use their smartphone rather than any other devices.
The Indian data cut is part of Deloitte's Global Mobile Consumer Survey, a multi-country online study of mobile phone users around the world. The 2015 study comprises of 49,000 respondents across 30 countries and six continents.