Saturday, December 1, 2001

South Korea is close to maxing out at 96 percent broadband penetration. Hong Kong and Singapore are surging on ahead with 58 percent and 24 percent, r

Broadband Asia!
By Teng Fang Yih

For as long as the world turns, day is day, and night is night, broadband usage will continue to rise in the Asia-Pacific region, and money will continue to be made from providing broadband access. The latest from Nielsen//NetRatings seem to indicate so. In September, the Internet user/audience measurement specialist's Internet Media Strategies service (IMS) released its findings that broadband usage for August in the region-specifically South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, New Zealand and Australia-was at 62 percent (with the unique audience of 18,937,317 surfers), as compared with narrowband at 38 percent (with the unique audience of 11,845,440).

The latest numbers from the company show that growth in the regional broadband market continues unabated. Peter Steyn, director of Nielsen//NetRatings Hong Kong, cites the numbers: "The highest growth seen was in Taiwan where broadband grew at the rate of 33 percent-from 30 percent penetration in July to 40 percent in October. The second highest in that period was in Hong Kong, which grew at the rate of 18 percent-from 49 percent to 58 percent. Korea remains the country with the highest percentage of broadband users globally, now at 96 percent. The lowest penetration of broadband in the Asia-Pacific region is in New Zealand at 4 percent, and Australia at 6 percent. Both these countries have shown very little growth since July."

"The continued high growth of broadband in countries such as Taiwan and Hong Kong, creates a vast array of new opportunities and challenges to marketers in the region," says Steyn. "A different way of viewing the online marketplace is by looking at it as a 'secure market'. These are people who are experienced in accessing secure environments on the Internet-for example, people who bank or shop with their credit cards online. This secure market has been growing around the region. The 80:20 rule applies here-the secure market currently makes up the smaller percentage of the total Internet population. However, users in this space represent the 'high value' customers on the Web. These surfers have overcome the barriers to transacting online, and the majority represent the 'upwardly mobile' segment. In terms of broadband uptake, the 'secure market' offers the most potential to providers of high speed network access, and content providers."

Friday, July 13, 2001

Bye the Numbers

MFC Internet Update - the News Review, 13 July 2001

According to Lantian Market Research, women held up more than half of China's Internet as of March, with women making up 54% of Internet users in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Xiamen, Dalian, Kunming, Chongqing, Xi'an, Wuhan, Harbin, Lanzhou, Haikou, Wenzhou and Wuzhou. Lantian's intrepid eyeball counters put overall urban Internet penetration in these cities at 16.9%, up from 5.9% a year earlier, with Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou together topping 25%. Beijing (13.1%), Guangzhou (6.1%) and Shanghai (5.3%) also lead the pack in terms of online shoppers, compared with the timid overall percentage of 2.8%. Internet penetration among corporate users jumped to 52.3% from last year's 28.6%, with much of the increase coming in the smaller cities. 52.3%?!? Tell us that this wasn't an e-mail survey.

Over at iamasia, recent numbers indicate that 17% of China's home surfers (note the "home", as distinct from "caf¨¦" and "office") paid a visit to at least one online game site in March, with most opting websites ( and offering card or strategy games. (Remember: this is William Ding's new strategy for chortal salvation!) In Hong Kong, about 24% of home users visited a game site in the same period.

Meanwhile, Nielsen/NetRatings has found that Hong Kong men "hit their peak presence online" when people elsewhere would prefer to be sleeping. Nielsen/NetRatings director Peter Steyn refused to speculate on what men were doing online at that time, but other market research firms have done enough rigorous research to suggest that they "may be indulging their vices". About 60% of Hong Kong males are logged on and cruising, sorry, surfing at 1am, with almost half still furiously at it by 2am. If nothing else you've got to compliment them on their stamina; as surveys last month showed, they are able to keep at it online longer than any other place in the world.

In part to discern how the well-off Chinese might use a secure Internet combined with a reliable delivery network, Sina commissioned a survey of ethnic Chinese, Chinese-reading Internet users... in the US and Canada. Ethnic Chinese surfers in North America are relatively well paid, highly educated, and young. Roughly 70% of them log on every day, with e-mail, surfing news and weather, product research, financial transactions and travel arrangements the most popular activities. Of the half with investments, 70% of Chinese-Americans trade stocks online, while only one half of Chinese-Canadians do so. About half of Chinese-American's shop online, compared with just over a fifth of Chinese Canadians. Books, computers and electronics lead the hit parade of purchased items, although the roughly 45% who are women prefer to buy clothes, makeup and vitamins. Women also preferred to read about issues related to health, finance, careers, fashion and relationships. Earth-shattering info... Nope, let us rephrase that: an Internet business plan!

And from the estimated prophets corner:

IBM China GM Ye Qiren said that Big Blue hoped to capture 20% of China's IDC market, which he placed at US$50 million. (This was announced shortly after pan-Asian IDC specialist iAsiaWorks confirmed that it was closing its China and Hong Kong ops, to focus resources on Taiwan and Korea "where it owns its own data centers and believes the opportunity is greatest".)

Saturday, May 26, 2001

Hong Kong Ranks First For Internet Site Visits


June 25, 2001

Hong Kong was No. 1 in Internet site visits among the countries surveyed in Nielsen//NetRating's Global Internet Index. Belgium came in second overall.

Usage in Hong Kong has increased 27% since September, according to the quarterly survey. Peter Steyn, director of ACNielsen, the independent Internet audience measurement service that conducted the survey, said increased accessibility caused the surge in usage. In January 1999, when the survey was first conducted, Hong Kong ranked third with an average of 23 sites visited behind South Korea with 27 and Germany with 24; then, the global average of sites visited was 14.

The current survey, conducted in May, measured the average number of site visits and the categories of sites hit. Respondents were also asked how much time they spent at each site. The survey ranked countries according to the average number of site hits rather than time spent at each site. The number of categories varied by country and included such groups as adult entertainment, finance, news and search engines.

Surfers in Hong Kong and Belgium visited an average of 28 sites per online session, surpassing the global average of 15. Users in Hong Kong spent about 12 hours online while those in Belgium spent seven hours online in May.

This is the first time ACNielsen has included Belgium in the survey, which has been conducted since January 1999.

Web surfers in both Hong Kong and Belgium spent most of their time at sites related to telecommunications and personal electronics. ( and ( -- sites that offer software downloads and e-mail programs -- ranked highest among the ones visited.

In Hong Kong, finance sites ranked 10th and users spent an average of 34 minutes per hit, followed by 11th-ranked adult entertainment with an average of five minutes and 12th-ranked shopping sites, which averaged 15 minutes per hit.

Users in Belgium visited shopping sites more -- the category ranked sixth out of 16 -- and lingered an average of 18 minutes per hit. Adult entertainment sites ranked ninth with an average of three minutes per visit, and finance ranked 13th with an average of 24 minutes.