Growth in mobile Facebook users, the amount of time consumers spend in the apps they use the most, optimizing for the mobile web vs. apps, Apple sales, and more are covered in this month’s installment of TFP’s Media Metrics roundup.

To help you keep up with trends and prepare for changes just around the corner, each month we compile excerpts from some key reports covering issues affecting the publishing and media industries. Here are our top picks.

Facebook mobile users chart

Facebook Closes in on 1 Billion Mobile Users Worldwide (eMarketer)

  • This year, approximately 1 billion users will access Facebook on a mobile phone at least once each month, according to eMarketer.
  • It said that more than 70% of all Facebook users globally will be mobile in 2015. By 2018, more than 75% of users will regularly access the social network via mobile phones, an audience of 1.34 billion users.
  • The report estimated that 73% of Facebook’s worldwide ad revenue ($10.9 billion) will come from mobile in 2015, a jump from 45% in 2013.

80% of Time Spent in Just Five Apps: Forrester (Mobile Marketer)

  • Research by Forrester revealed that consumers in the U.S. and U.K. use 24 apps per month but spend more than 80% of the time in their top five apps.
  • It said the five most consumed apps in the U.S. account for 28% of time spent on all apps, suggesting that many branded apps aren’t used or even found.
  • The research firm also indicated that time spent on apps leans more toward messaging and social than games.

Mobile time spent chart

Should Search Marketers Spend More Time Optimizing for Apps or Mobile Web? (Search Engine Watch)

  • While a comScore study found that 88% of mobile Internet time is spent in apps and 12% browsing websites, a recent report from the Interactive Advertising Bureau suggested a more even split, with only 18% of study participants saying they spend “significantly more time using mobile apps than browsing mobile websites.”
  • When it comes to ease of use and convenience, responses were divided almost evenly between the mobile web and mobile apps.
  • Preferences for shopping, news, and directories also indicated almost equal use of apps and the mobile web, while most users (42%) prefer the web over apps for search.

Comscore: Apple Edges Out Google as Top Smartphone Manufacturer (NetNewsCheck)

  • With 41.6% OEM market share, Apple took the top spot among smartphone makers as of December 2014, according to data from comScore.
  • Google’s Android now has a 53.1% market share, making it the leading smartphone platform.
  • Results also showed that Facebook is the No. 1 individual smartphone app.

New Data Shows Apple’s Explosive Growth in China (The New York Times)

  • In other analysis of Apple sales, Canalys reported that 12.3% of smartphones sold in China in Q4 were iOS-based, a big jump from 5% in the previous quarter. In the same period, 86.3% of smartphones sold in China were Android-based, compared with 93.7% in Q3.
  • According to recent figures, Apple is now the No. 1 or No. 2 smartphone maker in China (depending on slightly difference results), while just last October, it was No. 6, behind Huawei, Lenovo, Samsung, Xiaomi, and Yulong.
  • Kantar Worldpanel said that about a quarter of the iPhones sold in China in the past three months were purchased by first-time smartphone consumers, and that the bigger screen sizes of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus likely contributed to the significant growth.

28% of Time Spent Online is Social Networking (SocialTimes)

  • According to data from a GlobalWebIndex poll, users on average spend 1.72 hours per day on social networks, accounting for 28% of all online activity.
  •  Use of Twitter and other micro-blogging sites rose slightly to 0.81 hours per day, making up about 13% of total time spent online.
  • It said total time spent online via PCs, laptops, mobiles, and tablets went from 5.55 hours in 2012 to 6.15 last year.

Fewer Than Half Trust Social Media for News, Says Study (SocialTimes)

  • While the above report indicates social media use is up, a poll by Edelman found that only 48% of users trust social media sites for news and information.
  • In contrast, 64% said they trust search engines as a source of news and information.
  • The report showed social media came in fourth overall, following traditional media at 62% and hybrid media at 53%. At 47%, owned media was last.

Smartphones Account for 40 Percent Of U.S. Search Ad Spend In Q4 (Search Engine Land)

  • According to a Marin Software report, smartphones accounted for more than 40% of total search spending in the fourth quarter, up almost 5% from the same period last year.
  • While still dominant, desktops saw declines in most categories: 6.3% in impression share, 6.9% in click share, 6.1% in share of spending, and 10.1% in conversion share.
  • Meanwhile, smartphone ad impressions went up 4.8%, clicks increased 5.5%, ad spending rose 4.8%, and conversion share increased 9.6%.
  • In the tablet category, impressions and clicks each rose 1.4%, spending went up 1.3%, and conversion share moved up 0.5%.

If Desktop Traffic Seems Suspicious, It Probably Is (eMarketer)

  • Solve Media Q3 2014 data showed that suspicious U.S. desktop ad traffic increased almost 12 percentage points over the previous quarter.
  • While desktop bot traffic increased nearly 35% in the same period, only 17.2% of U.S. ad traffic on mobile was suspicious, the report found.
  • However, mobile averages were higher globally and are expected to continue to rise as more traffic shifts to mobile. It said suspicious mobile ad traffic was at 22% globally, a small increase quarter over quarter, noting that the global share of mobile bot traffic is more than 2 percentage points higher than that in the U.S.

Millennials Spend More Time With Mobile, Impacts TV Time (Mobile Marketing Daily)

  • Among the 18- to 34-year-old demographic, 77% use a smartphone daily compared with 60% of Gen Xers, according to research from Millward Brown Digital.
  • It found that while this group has increased its mobile time, its use of TVs and computers is declining significantly: 77% said they are watching TV compared with 86% of Gen Xers and 91% of baby boomers.
  • Some 58% of millennials are using laptops or desktops at least once a day, while 67% of Gen Xers and 71% of baby boomers do so.

Cisco Makes Its Annual Predictions on Mobile Data Traffic (The New York Times)

  • Much like past projections, Cisco’s 2014-2019 forecast of global mobile data traffic estimates tenfold growth.
  • The report said that by 2019, an estimated 69% of the world’s population (5.2 billion people) will use mobile phones.
  • In that period, 97% of overall global traffic will be from smart devices, with video accounting for 72% of mobile traffic.

10 Reasons Why Millennials Follow Brands on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest (SocialTimes)

  • According to a study by the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Center, 84% of millennial users follow brands on Facebook to show support. Some 85% do so on Twitter to get coupons or discounts, while 76% follow brands on Pinterest to share their interests and lifestyle with other users.
  • In addition, millennials follow brands to get updates, research products, and enter contests, among other things.
  • The study also found that they spend less on purchases made on Twitter than on the other two sites. When buying an item via Twitter, 72% of respondents said they spent $49 or less. That compares with when 69% on Pinterest and 54% on Facebook.

Media Metrics is a monthly feature from Technology for Publishing, aimed at keeping you armed with the latest industry data. If you’d like to share something you’ve read, drop us a note. And keep up with the latest industry news coverage by signing up for our This Week in Publishing emails or our monthly Publishing Trends newsletter.

Posted by: Margot Knorr Mancini

A thought leader in the publishing industry, Margot Knorr Mancini has helped numerous publishers redefine their missions to become nimble content generators with the ability to repurpose content easily and efficiently. As Founder & CEO of Technology for Publishing, her analytical mind allows her to remain a step ahead of the industry, recognizing early trends and developing pivotal best practices.