It’s not a news that Asia tops the charts of internet and mobile growth. Indeed, in the past decade, Asia maintained an outperform position when compared to the rest of the other localities in the world with regards to the Internet or the mobile phone usage. Taking a closer look in Asia, on the top of the Internet population ranking, Japan (94%), South Korea (92%) and Taiwan (88%) poised to be the leading localities, according to Youth Mobility Index (YMI.Asia) (Figure 1.1)

Youth Digital Mobility: Japan, South Korea and Taiwan tops the Internet penetration rate across 20 Asian localities

(Figure 1.1: Youth Digital Mobility: Japan, South Korea and Taiwan tops the Internet penetration rate across 20 Asian localities)

Renowned as the world’s leading tech innovator in 1960s, Japan did not leapfrog its technological advancements through the decades, but it brought the use of the Internet to the daily lives of every Japanese. In Japan, up to 44% of people aged over 80 used Internet at least once a day, as per the 2016 report in Statista. Some names of digital giants such as NTT DoCoMo, Rakuten and Softbank made household in Japan. Back to the days when the Internet was taking off, Japanese is found to be the number one blogging language in the whole world, with the popular use of social media such as Twitter, Ameba, FC2 and Yahoo! In Japan.

Although South Korea and Taiwan fall behind Japan in the arena of Internet usage, the highest percentage of digital natives was found in South Korea (7%) and Taiwan (10.3%) (YMI.Asia). For example, the success of the political event Sunflower Student Movement in 2014 proved the vital use of communications app, FireChat, through mobile phones among students in Taiwan, as 500,000 students and citizens were successfully gathered to the government venue through the app. During the leisure time, it is reported that Taiwanese digital natives read news from social media, such that 54% of Generation Z and 66% of Millennials received up-to-date news from media such as twitter and facebook, rather than the search engines and television preferred by the baby boomer and Generation X, the Nielsen’s Taiwan generational lifestyles report discovered.

Editorial photo: Asian youth sitting at an outdoor lounge, looking at a tablet

As far as wired South Korea is concerned, it is very common to see students use mobile phones in elementary schools, and citizens watch live video through mobile phone streaming in the locality. Thanks to the popularity of high-speed broadband that South Korea reigns the supreme in the world of eSports, such as Starcraft and League of Legends. Unfortunately, the excessive Internet use among the youth starts to have a negative impact, leading to an addiction disorder, namely Problematic Internet Use (PIU). Starting from 2007, rehab centres opened one after the other in South Korea such as Jump Up Internet Rescue School, to offer help to those obsessed with the cheap and high-speed Internet access.

If glancing the list of the Internet population ranking, though Myanmar ranked #17 out of 20 Asian localities for its Internet Advantage (YMi.asia), the Burmese nation occupies the champion position of Mobile Internet Advantage, owing to the arrival of foreign telecom companies such as Telenor and Ooredoo who have made the provision of internet-enabled SIM cards and mobile phones at an affordable cost. Interestingly, later on, Facebook becomes the Internet as it is the main portal used in the nation and Viber is the most popular communication app, says techinasia.com.

To discover what moves young Asians, learn more about the Youth Mobility Index (YMi.asia) at www.ymi.asia

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