Driven by low-priced data offers, mobile internet usage was up by 29 per cent in the period October-December 2016, over the previous quarter, a joint report by market research firm Kantar IMRB and Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) said on Thursday.
Search, social, messaging as a category was the topmost engaged and the average time spent grew by more than 50 per cent. WhatsApp witnessed 150 per cent growth in usage over the previous quarter.
"The entry of Jio with its free 4G data offer redefined the mobile landscape by triggering an increase in data usage amongst consumers and also led to a fundamental restructuring of the telecom industry," said Hemant Mehta, Managing Director, Media and Digital, Kantar IMRB, in a statement.
While women spent nearly 1.3 times more time on online shopping portals as compared to men, it was entertainment that toppled shopping to become the second-most engaged category.
"The huge jump in mobile usage is not only propelled by free data plans but demonetisation policy also is a significant contributor in driving news and media in the top five," added Preeti Desai, Country Manager, Mobile Marketing Association India.
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