Chimigi, Iran’s first online research panel, has released the results of Digital Iran 2012, a survey which benchmarks Iranian consumers on their Internet and mobile usage. The sample included 750 respondents who currently live in Iran and was fielded between September 20th and 23rd, 2012.
Researching information (67%) was the top activity performed by Iranian user followed by reading news websites (65%), online banking (64%), downloading music (49%), social networking (44%), and shopping online (43%). Interestingly Social Media comes 4th in this list as many social media sites like Facebook are blocked in Iran. Recently the Iranian government announced the plan to launch its own search engine and alternative to Gmail in its response to the anti-islamic film.
Podcasts, video downloads, listening to the radio, and streaming videos online stood together at 38%. The vast majority primarily uses a PC (90%), with 71% accessing the Internet from home and 25% from their workplace. In terms of preference in their browsing experience, Firefox (38%) leads the market, followed by Internet Explorer (30%), and Chrome (21%).
“We’re just beginning to shed light to the public on how active and sophisticated Iranian users are online,” says Amir-Esmaeil Bozorgzadeh, Managing Partner at Conovi, the parent company behind the online research panel, according to a press release.
On the mobile front, Nokia leads with a 42% share as the primary brand of choice followed by Samsung (20%), Sony Ericsson (16%), HTC (10%), and Apple (9%). Nokia will soon lose its top spot as it has announced earlier this year to exit the Iranian market.
Nearly half of respondents own a smartphone (46%), of which Samsung (25%) ranks at the top, followed by Nokia (21%) and Apple (16%). Tablet PC owners reflect 14% of all respondents.