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2014 RJI Mobile Media Research Report 4

Women are much more likely than men to read news stories found within social media on their smartphones according to the latest mobile media survey from the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute (RJI).

About three-quarters of the women who owned smartphones said they had interacted with social media and 65 percent said they had read news stories found within social media in the week prior to participating in the survey. By comparison, about two-thirds of men said they used their smartphones to interact with social media and 54 percent said they had read news stories found within social media (see charts 4.7 and 4.9).

While men were somewhat more likely than women to consume content provided directly by news organizations and to search the web for news on their smartphones, women and men tended to spend about the same amount time using their smartphones for these activities. About 60 percent of men and women overall said they spent more than 20 minutes on a typical day with new organization content and nearly as much time searching the web for news on their smartphones. Around one-third of men and women overall spent more than 20 minutes on a typical day reading news found on social media (see chart 4.10).

Among RJI’s other findings about the use of smartphones:

  • Owners aged 18 to 34 were found to be the most likely than older owners to search the Web for news on their smartphones. They also tended to spend more time with this activity than older owners (see charts 4.5 and 4.6).
  • As might be expected, owners age 18 to 34 also were much more likely than older owners to watch movies, television programs and other videos on their smartphones (see charts 4.11 and 4.12).
  • Women of all ages were more likely than men to play games on their smartphones. They also tended to spend more time than men playing games. (see charts 4.13 and 4.14).
  • Three in 10 owners overall said they had made purchases or reservations on their smartphones in the week prior to taking the survey. Men averaged 3.2 transactions; women, 2.5 (see chart 4.15).
  • Women were somewhat more likely than men to read books whereas men were somewhat more likely than women to read magazines on their smartphones (see charts 4.16 and 4.17).

Nearly 1,200 randomly selected U.S. adults participated in RJI’s third annual Mobile Media News Consumption survey between Jan. 1 and March 31. This phone survey focused exclusively on the use of smartphones and touch-screen tablets with mobile operating systems. RJI’s previous surveys included questions about the use of e-readers and other Internet-enabled mobile devices, such as netbooks, tablet PCs, hand-held computers, and ultra-light notebooks.

Coming soon in Report 5: Who is using large media tablets and tablet news apps in 2014?

Roger Fidler  
 
Program Director for Digital Publishing (Retired)



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