Did you know that the majority of Android users in China are on a 2G network? That about 44% of Android users in China use HTC phones? That almost 14% of iPhone users in China have spent $10-$20 on paid apps, with 9% spending more than $50?
China has the largest mobile-phone installed base (by volume) in the world, and just as it is in the U.S., the Chinese market is an Android vs. iPhone war. So how do people in China use their smartphones, and how does that compare to those in the United States?
As it is in the U.S., the top app categories in China are games and social networking, according to Chinese mobile ad firm Guohe. Weibo (the Chinese Twitter) is among one of the most popular apps in the country, while other localized social-networking apps (Weixin, Mi Tech, Miliao, etc.) are driving a large share of app usage. Social apps are becoming more prevalent for younger Chinese users, with 36% of 18- to 22-year-olds saying they use apps more than calling or text messaging.
Also just like in the U.S., content is apparently king in China. It is almost a worldwide maxim at this point: Content is the front-facing data that drives much of the worldwide Internet. In China, popular content apps include Spotify, Pinterest, Turntable.fm and Flipboard. Those should sound mighty familiar to U.S. users.
Android leads in Chinese smartphone usage, with 54% of the market share on Guohe’s network. Users were predominantly male (55%) and earned less than $50,000 a year.
Chinese users love to use their apps, too, which makes the demographic really no different from the rest of the world. U.S. users average about 77 minutes of app usage per day. But the Chinese are in the same ballpark: According to Guohe, 48% of iPhone users and 36% of Android users spend two hours or more with apps.
Interestingly, Android users in China do not pay for apps, while many iPhone users do. Only 23% of Chinese Android users have ever purchased an app, and 90% have spent less than $10. In contrast, 68% of iPhone users in China have spent less than $10, but 31% have spent more than that.
While it is hard to draw definitive conclusions about the overall habits of Chinese smartphones users based on the data of one ad network (in contrast, there are several sources of similar data in the U.S. from the likes of Flurry, Fiksu and Millennial Media), it is nonetheless interesting to note the differences between iPhone and Android users, as well as many of the similarities to U.S. users. Games and social networking drive mobile growth in China, just like the U.S. Many of the same apps (or, at least the same types of apps) are popular in both China and the U.S. Check out the infographic below.