News consumption will be greatly shaped by the habits of mobile device users. They read more often, and are proving to be valuable and highly-engaged content customers.
The newness of mobile usage often means that industry forecasts cannot determine usage patterns more nuanced than increases. However, now that half of US adults access the web through a mobile device, we are beginning to see more meaningful feedback about how this new channel is best at influencing users. While email and shopping have become more accepted popular mobile activities, emerging research is showing that mobile devices are now greatly shaping how tablet and smartphone users get their news. Pew research shows the usage levels are high - 64 percent of tablet owners and 62 percent smartphone owners access news at least once a week, which is as often as they use email or play games on tablets, and less often on smartphones only over email.
More device choice has led to consumers reading news across platforms
In addition to these high levels of general news consumption, mobile device users show frequent use as well. These new devices add screen time rather than take it away from other media channels - three-quarters of mobile news users read content on more than one platform. This includes tablet, smartphone, laptop or desktop, and print - and some users get their news on all four choices. They also read more often - "when people are asked to recall time spent, the evidence suggests multi-device users spend as much time on each platform as other news users-not substituting one for another.”
Mobile news consumers are more engaged and loyal customers
The mobile news consumer is unique for several reasons beyond being multi-platform and frequent readers. They tend to be more engaged, are more loyal to print, and notice ads more often. Tablet news consumers who get news more than one time during the day are also twice as likely as those who get news once a day to have paid for news on their tablet (10% versus 4%).” Mobile news users pay more often for news access, and prefer more traditional reading experiences, wanting a near-print product rather than a high-tech one. Ad interaction is also higher - click-through rates are about 15 percent, while CTR from the general population is under 1 percent.