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TMCNet:  Connecting to social media networks top activity of smartphone owners -- report

[December 21, 2012]

Connecting to social media networks top activity of smartphone owners -- report

AMMAN, Dec 21, 2012 (Jordan Times - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- Using smartphones to connect to social media networks is the number one activity for holders of these devices in Jordan and the rest of the region, according to the Arab Advisers Group.



Using smartphones for playing games is second on the list, followed by listening to music and using educational apps, the results of a recent study on social media trends by the group indicated.

"Usage of social media platforms is on the rise in Jordan and the region, and... became easier with the increase in numbers of smartphones holders as well as the presence of high-speed mobile Internet in the country," Jawad Abbassi, founder and general manager of the Arab Advisers Group, told The Jordan Times over the phone this week.

Smartphone penetration in the Kingdom currently ranges from 46-50 per cent and is expected to grow by around 6 per cent annually, according to estimates by the Arab Advisers Group, a specialised research, analysis and consulting company focused on the communications, media, technology and financial markets in the region.

Mobile penetration in the country reached 138 per cent by the end of September, with about 8.767 million subscribers, according to official figures.

Currently, there are 2.524 million Facebook users in Jordan, 57.9 per cent of them males, figures by www.checkfacebook.com indicated on Wednesday.

Some 41 per cent of the Facebook users in the Kingdom are aged between 18 and 24 years, according to the website.

In addition, Jordan is home to around 60,000 Twitter users, according to estimates by social media experts.

Owners of smartphones interviewed by The Jordan Times on Wednesday confirmed the results of the report.

"I use my iPhone for checking my Facebook page throughout the day," said Samer Mahmoud, a garment store employee.

"Usually, we do not have customers during the day as they go out shopping after 7:00pm, therefore, I fill my time chatting with friends on Facebook and checking what my friends share on their Facebook pages," the 43-year-old added.

Hamzeh Hammoudeh, a Petra University student, said he uses his Samsung Galaxy SII phone mostly for playing games.

"I do not have an Internet subscription for my mobile so I cannot connect to Facebook. When I have access to free Wi-Fi I use it to access Facebook," Hammoudeh noted.

"I have lots of games downloaded on my phone and play them most of the time... even when I am in class and the lesson is boring," he added.

According to Abbassi, the increase in ownership of smartphones in Jordan and the region has boosted online sales of apps and games.

Jordanians have spent about $2 million this year on purchasing apps and content using their smartphones, compared to $47 million in Saudi Arabia, $10 million in the UAE and $2.9 million in Kuwait, according to the report.

___ (c)2012 the Jordan Times (Amman, Jordan) Visit the Jordan Times (Amman, Jordan) at www.jordantimes.com Distributed by MCT Information Services

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