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Taiwanese most reliant on phones in Asia-Pacific region: survey

Taiwanese most reliant on phones in Asia-Pacific region: survey

Taipei, Aug. 13 (CNA) Taiwanese are the most frequent users of smartphones in the Asia-Pacific region, often watching videos and visiting social networking sites on their handsets, according to the results of a survey released by Google Inc. on Tuesday. The survey, conducted by Google and market research firm Ipsos MediaCT, found that 81 percent of Taiwan's smartphone users do not leave home without their devices, higher than in Japan (80 percent), Hong Kong (77 percent), Singapore (73 percent), South Korea (63 percent) and China (44 percent). In the previous survey in 2012, only 43 percent of Taiwanese respondents said they did not leave home without their phones, the same level as in China and much lower than the 78 percent in Japan. Google did not explain why there was such a huge jump in Taiwan from one year to the next. Taiwan's smartphone penetration rate also hit 51 percent in the first quarter of 2013, up sharply from 32 percent in the same period of last year and 26 percent in the first quarter of 2011, according to the findings. In terms of user behavior, some 93 percent of Taiwan's respondents said they use phones to visit social networking sites, while 90 percent said they watch videos. Some 87 percent of the respondents have used their phone to search for a product or service, with 70 percent making a mobile purchase at least once a month. A total of 1,000 Taiwanese adults aged 18-64 who identified themselves as people who use a smartphone to access the Internet were interviewed online in the survey. A smartphone is defined in the survey as "a mobile phone offering advanced capabilities, often with PC-like functionality or ability to download apps." (By Jeffrey Wu)