The survey looked at consumer preferences and tendencies with regard to mobile, online and in-person interactions with retailers, banks, government agencies, healthcare providers, and insurers.
China (51 percent) and Korea (50 percent) were joined by India (49 percent) as the countries with the highest percentage of "mobile native" consumers - those who interact with businesses via mobile devices every day. France (12 percent), Japan (15 percent) and the United States (16 percent) were the countries with the lowest percentage of mobile-native responders.
The survey found that businesses are quick to respond in sectors with consumer-generated pressure to interact via mobile channels. This is most apparent in the retail sector, where businesses are engaging with consumers to cultivate brand loyalty and make special offers.
The survey segmented respondents into five categories. "Mobile Natives" tend to be technologically savvy. They are typically young (under 34 years of age), affluent males who consider themselves early adopters of technology. "App Shoppers and Bankers" are frequent app users, but they typically use their devices for the limited purposes of banking or retail shopping.
More than half of consumers globally have yet to embrace mobile business apps even though they have smartphones, still preferring traditional channels such as Internet or in-person interactions. These consumers make up the final three categories of consumers – "M:webs" have adopted mobile technology but are not accustomed to using mobile apps; "Mobile Intenders" plan to do more mobile interactions in the future; and "Abc-Mobiles" use a mobile phone but don't typically interact with organizations via mobile devices. This is often due to an unwillingness to share personal data and a low level of trust with online businesses.
Respondents said they are most likely to use their mobile devices to interact with retailers, followed by banks, then insurers, Customers of retailers also have the highest expectation of mobile interactions, the survey found.
Among the applications offered by retailers and financial institutions, the most popular type in every one of the 14 countries surveyed is alerts, such as apps that notify consumers of suspicious transactions. More than 72 percent of respondents described such apps as attractive.
The survey of 2,239 adult smartphone users was conducted online in mid-2013 across 14 countries: Australia, Brazil, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Russia, Turkey, the UK, and the United States.