More engaging online than in real life

AS the Covid-19 crisis restricted most activities in the last two years, socialising online has taken off, especially in the Philippines, where 77 % of the population has become more engaging online than in real life.

Telenor Asia, an international telecommunications company, said this as it released the findings of its study, Digital Lives Decoded, that surveyed 8,000 consumers across eight markets in South and South-East Asia.

Based on the results of the study, socialising online has “strengthened connections between people”, stressing that overall, 66% of respondents engage more online than in real life.

Filipino consumers are the “most virtually social” at 77%. Next are respondents from Indonesia (75%), Bangladesh (74%), Vietnam (71%), Pakistan (66%), Malaysia (60%) and Thailand (56%).

As pointed out by Jorgen C. Arentz Rostrup, head of Telenor Asia, some of the habits formed in the over two years of the Covid-19 crisis “are becoming hard-wired in the way we live our lives today”.

“Younger generations tend to spend more time socialising online, but Baby Boomers (people who were born after World War II) say that mobile technology is helping them feel more connected to their loved ones,” he said.

This, as 55% of the respondents said mobile technology is helping them feel more connected to people they know, with Thailand topping the list at 63%, followed by Bangladesh (61%) and the Philippines (58%).

When it comes to respondents saying that they regularly meet new people online, Thailand is still first on the list with 66%, while the Philippines is second to last with 39%.

Telenor Asia said in previous reports, “we have seen the role mobile connectivity has played in helping people supercharge their careers and earning potential as well as how it improves daily life.”

However, as the pandemic started taking a heavy toll on people’s lives in 2020, nine in 10 respondents are more dependent on their mobile phones for leisure now than two years ago.

It stressed that almost half – 47% – said their reliance has increased significantly, while 42% said it somewhat increased. Only 10% said their dependence on mobiles did not change. — The Nation/ANN

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