evidence and ideas. applied

Header---BBC-Press-Releases
Backgrounder Methodology Research Partners Question Wording

Mobile Phones Central to Developing Countries’ Economic Success, Quality of Life: Global Poll


23 January 2012 - 
Citizens of developing nations overwhelmingly see mobile phones as critical to their country’s economic success and to their own quality of life, a new 22-nation poll by the BBC reveals.

The poll, conducted by GlobeScan among 21,558 people, indicates that the countries most likely to rate mobile phones as “essential” or “very important” to their economy are all in the developing world. Nigerians almost unanimously regard them as central to the economic success of their country (97%), as do large majorities of Egyptians (92%), Filipinos (88%), and Indonesians (82%), among others.

People in developing nations are also most likely to feel strongly about mobile phones’ importance to their own quality of life, with large majorities in all developing nations polled rating them as “essential” or “very important,” including 88 per cent of Kenyans and 78 per cent of Ghanaians.

On average across all 22 countries polled, 32 per cent consider mobile phones “essential” to their country’s economic success, with a further 38% regarding them as “very important.” Nearly as many rated them as critical to their personal quality of life, with 29 per cent rating them as “essential” and 34 per cent “very important.”

But the poll indicates that, by comparison, citizens of several major industrialised economies are less likely to regard mobile phones as having a central role in economic success and personal life. Fewer than half of Germans (49%) and only one in four French (25%) believe that mobile phones are “very important” or “essential” to their country's economic success, as well as a lower than average number of Britons (57%) and Americans (58%).

The picture is similar when it comes to people’s quality of life. With only 37 per cent of Britons rating mobile phones as essential or very important to their quality of life, the UK is among a group of industrialised nations that also includes the USA (39%), France (27%), and Germany (28%), where attachment to mobile phones is less intense.

Doug Miller, GlobeScan Chairman said: “Mobile phones are widely seen by citizens as playing important roles in our economies and personal lives. But in developing nations, with their young populations and absence of well developed land-line networks, the mobile phone is seen as particularly essential.”

A total of 21,558 citizens across 22 countries were interviewed face-to-face or by telephone between July 3, 2011 and September 16, 2011. Polling was conducted for BBC World Service by the international polling firm GlobeScan and its research partners in each country. In eight of the 21 countries, the sample was limited to major urban areas. The margin of error per country ranges from +/- 2.0 to 4.4 per cent, 19 times out of 20.

For more details, please visit www.GlobeScan.com

Note: Sample changed from urban-only to nationally representative between 2010 and 2011 in Mexico


Participating Countries

bbc2012 mobile phones country map

In Brazil, China, Ecuador, Egypt, Indonesia, Panama, the Philippines, and Turkey urban samples were used.

For detailed results, including country-by-country data for all key questions, please see the Key Findings page below.


Media Contacts

For media interviews with the participating pollsters, please contact:

Sam Mountford, Research Director
GlobeScan Incorporated, London
+44 20 7928 5368
(Mobile: +44 7854 132625)
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Oliver Martin, Director, Global Development
GlobeScan Incorporated, Toronto
+1 416 969 3073
(Mobile: +1 416 721 3544)
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

About GlobeScan

GlobeScan Incorporated is an international opinion research consultancy. We provide global organisations with evidence-based insight to help them set strategy and shape their communications. Companies, multilateral institutions, governments, and NGOs trust GlobeScan for our unique expertise across reputation management, sustainability, and stakeholder relations. GlobeScan conducts research in over 90 countries, is ISO 9001-2008 quality certified and a signatory to the UN Global Compact.

Established in 1987, GlobeScan is an independent, management-owned company with offices in Toronto, London, and San Francisco. For more information, visit: www.globescan.com

About BBC World Service

The BBC World Service is an international multimedia broadcaster, delivering a wide range of language and regional services on radio, TV, online and via wireless handheld devices. It uses multiple platforms to reach its weekly audience of 166 million globally, including shortwave, AM, FM, digital satellite and cable channels. Its news sites include audio and video content and offer opportunities to join the global debate. BBC World Service offers its multilingual radio content to partner FM stations around the world and has numerous partnerships supplying content to news websites, mobile phones and other wireless handheld devices as well as TV channels. For more information, visit: www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice

Backgrounder: Region-by-Region Results

North America

In the US, a solid majority of 58 per cent of Americans considers mobile phones to be “essential” or “very important” to the economic success of their country. However, this is significantly below the 22-country global average of 70 per cent, and is the fifth lowest percentage in the survey. Attitudes of younger Americans are more enthusiastic, with 70 per cent of those aged between 18 and 24 years believing mobile phones are “essential” or “very important” to their country’s economic success (as opposed to 77% globally).

When it comes to rating the importance of mobile phones to their personal quality of life, only 39 per cent of Americans say they are “essential” or “very important,” which is 24 points below the 22-country global average of 63 per cent, and is the fourth lowest proportion in the survey. Respondents in the youngest age category (18–24 years) are more likely to consider mobile phones as “essential” or “very important” to their personal life: 56 per cent hold this opinion, but this is significantly below the global average of 74 per cent, and is the fourth lowest percentage among the 22 participating countries.

Latin America

Among Latin American respondents, the perceived importance of mobile phones to the current economic success of their own country is quite high in five out of the six countries surveyed in the region. Panamanians are the most likely to consider the contribution of mobile phones to their national economy as “essential” or “very important” (75%), followed by Peruvians (73%), while proportions in Brazil (69%), Ecuador (68%), and Mexico (67%) are in line with the 70 per cent global average.

Fewer Chileans perceive mobile phones as central to their country’s economic success: only 54 per cent believe they are “very important” or “essential,” which is the third lowest percentage in the survey. Among those aged 18–24, the proportion rises to 61 per cent, still much lower than the global average in this age category (77%), and the third lowest proportion in the survey.

When it comes to assessing the importance of mobile phones to people’s quality of life, Panamanians and Peruvians are the most likely to consider them as “essential” or “very important,” with proportions (68% and 67% respectively) somewhat above the global average of 63 per cent. In Brazil and Ecuador, proportions are in line with the global figure (64% and 61%, respectively).

The situation is different in the two OECD countries of the region. In Mexico, just over half of respondents (51%) rate mobile phones as “essential” or “very important” to their personal quality of life, while only 44 per cent do so in Chile—the fifth lowest percentage in the survey. Proportions are higher among Mexicans aged 18–24 (59%), and also among Chileans in the same group of age (55%), but these proportions are still lower than those in other countries of the region. Within this age category, attachment to mobile phones is particularly strong in Peru, where the difference with the overall population is marked (76%, slightly above the 74% global average).

Europe

In Europe, Russia is the country with the highest proportion of respondents who believe that mobile phones are “essential” or “very important” to their country’s economic success (74%). In the other survey country on the European fringe, Turkey, 67 per cent of Turks are of the same opinion—a figure in line with the 70 per cent global average.

Within the EU countries surveyed, views are quite diverse. In Spain, the response is similar to that seen in Russia and Turkey. Two-thirds of Spaniards (68%) say mobile phones’ contribution to their country is “essential” or “very important.” In the UK, a majority of 57 per cent thinks the same, but this is significantly below the global average (70%). Germans’ feelings are more muted: a plurality of just 49 per cent considers mobiles phones to be “essential” or “very important” to the economic success of their country—the second lowest percentage in the survey. At the far end of the spectrum, France offers a sharply contrasting picture. It is the only country surveyed where more people think that mobile phones are “not very” or “not at all” important to the success of their national economy (37%) than think they are important (25%, by far the lowest proportion in the survey).

In all European countries surveyed, respondents aged 18–24 are significantly more likely than the overall population to regard mobile phones as “essential” or “very important” to their country's economic success. This is particularly true in the UK (72%), in Germany (58%), and in France (43%), although in the two latter countries the proportions remain very much lower than the global average for this age group (77%).

With regard to the perceived importance of mobile phones to quality of life, Russian and Turkish respondents have the strongest attachment to their mobile phones, with 66 and 59 per cent respectively saying their phones are “essential” or “very important” to their personal quality of life (proportions in line with the global average of 63 per cent).

Within the EU, the picture is more varied. Spaniards attach the most importance to their mobile phones, although this is not a particularly strong attachment—at 50%, it is significantly below the global average. Respondents in the UK are divided, with equal proportions (37%) saying that mobile phones are central to their quality of life (“essential” or “very important”) or saying the opposite (“not very” or “not at all” important). The French and the Germans are by far the least attached, with only 27 and 28 per cent respectively who say that mobile phones are important to their quality of life—the lowest percentages in the survey. France and Germany are also the only countries in the survey with a plurality (France at 49% and Germany at 50%) who consider mobile phones to be “not very” or “not at all” important.

Respondents aged 18–24 show much stronger attachment to their mobile phones than the overall population. In Spain, 72 per cent say their devices are “essential” or “very important” to their quality of life—a proportion in line with the global average in this group of age (74%). Sixty-four per cent share this opinion in the UK, and 55 per cent in France. Less than half do so in Germany (48%), but this is still a substantially bigger proportion than for the German population as a whole.

Africa

Africa is the continent where the perceived importance of mobile phones to countries’ economic success is highest. In each of the four countries surveyed, at least 80 per cent of respondents say that the contribution of mobile phones to the national economy is “essential” or “very important.” Nigerians and Egyptians are the most likely to think that, at 97 and 92 per cent respectively—the highest percentages in the survey. Ghanaians and Kenyans are slightly less, with 82 and 80 per cent respectively who think mobile phones are important to their country’s economic success. This is still significantly above the global average of 70 per cent.

When it comes to rating the importance of mobile phones to their personal quality of life, African respondents also show the strongest attachment to them. An overwhelming proportion of Nigerians (97%) says that mobile devices are “essential” or “very important” to their personal quality of life—this is 34 points above the global average (63%) and the highest percentage in the survey. Egypt and Kenya come just after, with the second and third highest proportions in the survey (89% and 88%). Attachment in Ghana is not as intense as in the other African countries surveyed, but with 78 per cent who consider their mobile phones to be “essential” or “very important,” it has the fifth highest proportion in the survey, well above the 63 per cent global average.

In each of the four African countries surveyed, it is noteworthy that there is barely any difference when comparing results for those aged 18–24 to results for the overall population.

Asia

In Asian countries, the perceived importance of mobile phones to the current economic success of national economies is very high compared to most other regions surveyed apart from Africa. Filipinos are the most likely to stress the importance of the devices to their country’s economy, with 88 per cent saying they are “essential” or “very important”—18 points above the global average of 70 per cent, and the third highest percentage in the survey. They are followed by Indonesians (82%, fourth highest proportion). With 77 and 74 per cent respectively, China and Pakistan are also somewhat above the global average.

India (66%) completes the group with a proportion that is somewhat below the global average. However, India is the only Asian country where a notable difference can be seen between results for those aged 18–24 and results for the overall population. Three quarters (75%) of young Indians believe that mobile phones are “essential” or “very important” to the economic success of India—a proportion that is in line with the global average for the same age category (77%).

As for the perceived importance of mobile phones to quality of life, results in Asian countries follow a similar pattern, in that Asian respondents show a stronger attachment to their devices than in most other regions—except Africa. The Philippines and Indonesia are the countries where attachment is the strongest, with 81 per cent (fourth highest proportion in the survey) and 76 per cent respectively considering mobile phones to be “essential” or “very important” to their personal quality of life. China follows at 72 per cent, while India (67%) and Pakistan (63%) show an attachment in line with the global average of 63 per cent.

In the five Asian countries surveyed, no notable difference is observed when comparing results for those aged 18–24 with results for the overall population.

Methodology

In total 21,558 citizens in Brazil, Chile, China, Ecuador, Egypt, France, Germany, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, the Philippines, Russia, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States were interviewed face-to-face or by telephone between July 3, 2011 and September 16, 2011. Polling was conducted for BBC World Service by GlobeScan and its research partners in each country.

In Brazil, China, Ecuador, Egypt, Indonesia, Panama, the Philippines, and Turkey urban samples were used. The margin of error per country ranges from +/- 2.0 to 4.4 per cent, 19 times out of 20.

 

CountrySample Size (unweighted)Field datesSample frameSurvey methodologyType of sample
Brazil 806 July 26 – August 15, 2011 18–69 Telephone Urban1
Chile 1200 August 18–29, 2011 18+ Face-to-face National
China 1000 July 13–31, 2011 18+ Telephone Urban2
Ecuador 497 August 27 – September 16, 2011 18+ Face-to-face Urban3
Egypt 1005 July 16–29, 2011 18+ Face-to-face Urban4
France 503 August 16–18, 2011 15+ Telephone National
Germany 1013 July 8–27, 2011 16–70 Telephone National
Ghana 1037 July 25 – August 20, 2011 18+ Face-to-face National
India 1254 July 15–29, 2011 18+ Face-to-face National
Indonesia 1000 July 3 – August 25, 2011 18+ Face-to-face Urban5
Kenya 816 August 5 – September 1, 2011 18+ Face-to-face National
Mexico 1000 July 23–28, 2011 18+ Face-to-face National
Nigeria 755 August 2–9, 2011 18–65 Face-to-face National
Pakistan 2400 July 18 – August 8, 2011 18+ Face-to-face National
Panama 750 August 9–22, 2011 18+ Telephone Urban6
Peru 1215 July 15–20, 2011 18–70 Face-to-face National
Philippines 800 July 23 – August 8, 2011 18+ Face-to-face Urban7
Russia 1006 July 22 – August 10, 2011 18+ Face-to-face National
Spain 501 September 1–10, 2011 18+ Telephone National
Turkey 1000 July 5–18, 2011 15+ Face-to-face Urban8
United Kingdom 1000 July 6 – August 23, 2011 18+ Telephone National
USA 1000 July 8 – August 18, 2011 18+ Telephone National
  1. In Brazil the survey was conducted in Belo Horizonte, Brasilia, Curitiba, Goiânia, Porto Alegre, Recife, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, and São Paulo, representing 18 per cent of the national population.
  2. In China the survey was conducted in Beijing, Beiliu, Chengdu, Dujiangyan, Fenyang, Fuyang, Guangzhou, Hangzhou, Manzhouli, Quanzhou, Qujing, Shanghai, Shenyang, Shuangcheng, Wuhan, Xi'an, Xining, and Zhengzhou, representing 45 per cent of the national adult population.
  3. In Ecuador the survey was conducted in Cuenca, Guayaquil and Quito, representing 52 per cent of the urban population.
  4. In Egypt the survey was conducted in Alexandria, Cairo, Giza, and Shubra El-Kheima, representing 24 per cent of the national population.
  5. In Indonesia the survey was conducted in Bandung, Jakarta, Makassar, Medan, and Surabaya, representing 27 per cent of the national adult population.
  6. In Panama the survey was conducted in Panamá, Chiriquí, Colón, Coclé, Veraguas, Herrera, Bocas del Toro and Los Santos, representing 70 per cent of the adult population.
  7. In the Philippines the survey was conducted in the National Capital Region, representing 27 per cent of the urban adult population.
  8. In Turkey the survey was conducted in Adana, Ankara, Antalya, Bursa, Diyarbakir, Erzurum, Istanbul, Izmir, Konya, Samsun, and Zonguldak, representing 56 per cent of the national adult population.

Research Partners

CountryResearch InstituteLocationContact
Brazil Market Analysis Florianópolis Fabián Echegaray This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+55 48 3364 0000
Chile Mori Chile Santiago Marta Lagos
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+56 2334 4544
China GlobeScan Toronto Oliver Martin
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+1 416 969 3073
Ecuador Propraxis / Sigma Dos Quito Carlos Moreno
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+593 7 2888519
Egypt Attitude Market Research Cairo Mohamed Al Gendy
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. '; document.write(''); document.write(addy_text40720); document.write('<\/a>'); //-->\n This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+202 22711262
France Efficience 3 Paris and Rheims Christian de Thieulloy
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+33 1 4316 5442
Germany Ri*QUESTA GmbH Teningen Bernhard Rieder
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+49 7641 93 43 36
Ghana Business Interactive Consulting Limited Accra Razaaque Animashaun
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+233 302 783140 / +233 302 782892
India Team C Voter Noida Yashwant Deshmukh
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+91 120 4175200 (ext. 223)
Indonesia DEKA Marketing Research Jakarta Irma Malibari
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+62 21 723 6901
Kenya Research Path Associates Ltd. Nairobi Jeremy Mwololo
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+254 020 2734770
Mexico Parametria Mexico City Francisco Abundis
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+52 55 2614 0089
Nigeria Millward Brown Lagos Michael Umogun
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+234 802 311 7969
Pakistan Gallup Pakistan Islamabad Ijaz Shafi Gilani
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+92 51 2655630
Panama Dichter & Neira Panama City Gabriel Neira
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+ 507 236 4000
Peru Datum Lima Urpi Torrado
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. '; document.write(''); document.write(addy_text5730); document.write('<\/a>'); //-->\n This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+511 215 0600
Philippines M&S-Sigma Dos Philippines, Inc. Makati City Teodora Marasigan
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+63 2 8172780
Russia CESSI Institute for Comparative Social Research Moscow Vladimir Andreenkov
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+7 495 650 55 18
Spain Sigma Dos Int. Madrid Gines Garrido
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. '; document.write(''); document.write(addy_text35694); document.write('<\/a>'); //-->\n This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+34 91 360 0474
Turkey Yöntem Research Consultancy Ltd. Istanbul Bülent Gündoğmuş
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+90 212 278 1219
United Kingdom Populus Data Solutions London Patrick Diamond
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+44 207 553 4148
USA Populus Data Solutions London Patrick Diamond
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+44 207 553 4148

Question Wording

M8A

Thinking about mobile phones, how important would you say they are to the current economic success of [COUNTRY]?

  • 01 Essential
  • 02 Very important
  • 03 Somewhat important
  • 04 Not very important
  • 05 Not at all important
  • VOLUNTEERED (DO NOT READ OUT)
  • 99 Don’t Know / Not applicable
M8B

And how important is a mobile phone to your personal quality of life?

  • 01 Essential
  • 02 Very important
  • 03 Somewhat important
  • 04 Not very important
  • 05 Not at all important
  • VOLUNTEERED (DO NOT READ OUT)
  • 99 Don't Know / Not applicable

Small-Square---Our-Partners Small-Square---Our-Clients Small-Square---Our-Expertise

Press Releases

FOLLOW US ON TWITTER: @GLOBESCAN
GlobeScan

RT @SustAbility: What makes a strong leader in sustainability? @erbinstitute digs into the GlobeScan-Sustainability Leaders Survey https://…