Digital Natives Population In Asia: South Korea, Malaysia, Singapore Top Country Rankings

According to the latest Measuring the Information Society report by ITU, there are 363 million digital natives across the globe, or 5.2 per cent of world population, in 2012. And of the world’s young population, some 30 per cent of them are digital natives.

ITU defines digital natives as “as the population of networked youth – aged 15-24 years – with five or more years of online experience.” This is the first time ITU attempts to quantify the number of digital natives in 180 economies across the globe.

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In Asia, Facebook Exceeds 200 Million Users But Growth Deceleration Continues

facebook in asia

FACEBOOK NOW HAS OVER 950 MILLION USERS WORLDWIDE and 80% of its user base are from outside U.S. and Canada.

As of end of Quarter 2 2012, Facebook exceeds 200 million users in Asia. There are now 204.9 million Facebook users in Asia, which is roughly 27% of Facebook’s non-US/Canada user base.

Facebook opened its door to everyone worldwide on September 26 2006. In Asia, Facebook took 49 months to reach the 100 million users mark. With its unabating phenomenal popularity worldwide, the social networking giant took just 20 months to add another 100 million Asian users.

However, Facebook users growth in Asia has been slowing since the beginning of 2011, from its peak of 21% in Q4 2010. In second quarter of 2012, its Asian user base grew by 5.5%.

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Facebook in Asia (Quarter 1 2012): India In Pole, Japan Continues to Surge

Facebook has over 850 million users worldwide. Out of that, a total of 194 million users are from Asia at the end of March 2012. Most of these users from the Southeast Asia region – 97 million or 54% of the total Facebook users in Asia. Some other observations on the latest Facebook in Asia statistics:

  1. In early February 2012, India surpassed Indonesia to become Facebook No. 1 Nation in Asia. Back in January 2011, India has 16.9 million Facebook users. Now, the country has over 45.9 million Facebook users.
  2. In addition to India, Japan has been growing impressively in the past 1 year or so. Japan started the year 2011 with 1.8 million Facebook users. Today, there are over 8 million users in Japan.
  3. South Korea has been growing with double digits figure. The country is now ahead of Pakistan in the Facebook in Asia list.
  4. Among the top ten countries, India, Japan, and South Korea has been the high-growth Facebook nations since early 2011. Throughout 2012, Facebook will be focusing on these three countries for users acquisition, as the Big Blue of the social web aims to reach the 1 billion users mark.
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Facebook in Asia: A Growth Story (2011)

facebook in asia

In 2011, Facebook added 69 million new Asian users in 2011. The social networking giant with $100 billion valuation started 2011 with 112 million Asian users and ended the year with 181 million users.

However, its quarterly growth has been sliding steadily in 2011, from 17% in Quarter 1 to 8% in Quarter 4. In Quarter 4 2010, it was growing at 21%.

2010 was the year when Facebook went on hyper-drive growth on users acquisition front in Asia. However, 2011 was the year when Facebook downshifted a gear or two. The decline is expected to continue as many Asian nations are reaching saturation level.

Table 1: Quarterly Growth of Facebook Population in Asia 2011
Quarter 1 Quarter 2 Quarter 3 Quarter 4
+17% +15% +11% +8%
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Facebook in Asia: Latest Stats on Total Users by Country [Quarter 3 2011]

facebook in asia

Facebook now has over 800 million users worldwide, with 168 million are from Asia. In Quarter 3 this year, Facebook added 16.8 million new users in Asia (compared to 19.5 million in Quarter 2 2011). So far this year, the social network has added some 56 million new users; it started the year with 111 million Asian users. Its latest quarter-on-quarter growth rate is 11%. However, the rate has been somewhat slowing since end of 2010 – from 24% in Quarter 4 2010 to 17% Q1’11 to 15% Q2’11 to 11% Q3’11.

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2011 Networked Readiness Index by World Economic Forum: How Networked is Asia?


World Economic Forum (WEF) on Tuesday released the latest edition of The Global Information Technology Report 2010 – 2011: Transformation 2.0 report. The annual report ranks a total of 138 countries worldwide, using its Networked Readiness Index (NRI).

Some observations:

  • A total of 19 Asian countries in the 2010-2011 NRI list, out of 138 countries worldwide.
  • 5 Asian countries are in the top 20 of this year’s NRI list – Singapore (2nd), Taiwan (5), South Korea (10), Hong Kong (12), and Japan (19).
  • Singapore is the most networked nation in Asia. The Southeast Asian city-state ranked second in the world, behind Sweden.
  • Singapore is also the only Asian country ranked higher than the United States (no. 5 worldwide).
  • Malaysia ranked first among Upper-middle Income group of countries. Malaysia is also the only upper-middle income country in the top 30 overall. The country’s score increased from 4.65 in 2010 to 4.74 in 2011.
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Zynga Game Cards Now Available in Six Asian Countries

Zynga Game Cards

Zynga and MOL AccessPortal today announce the launch of Zynga Game Cards in Asia, which will be available for purchase in more than 500,000 outlets in six Asian countries – Malaysia, India, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand. (An estimated total of 100.7 million Facebook users in these six Asian countries.)

With the partnership, Zynga leverages MOL’s vast network of physical and online channels to make available the Zynga Game Cards to social gamers across Asia:

  • Popular retail chains such as 7-Eleven stores in Singapore and Malaysia, and Singapore’s Comic Connections;
  • MOL affiliated cybercafés such as India’s Sify Cybercafes, Philippine’s Netopia Internet Cafes and Thailand’s Fun Loader Cybercafes;
  • Electronic payment kiosks, online channels, banking and telco partners such as Malaysia’s Maybank2u, Singapore’s GXCredits and Indonesia’s Gudang Voucher.
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Winners at the 10th International Asia Pacific ICT Awards (APICTA) 2010

International APICTA Awards 2010

The 10th International APICTA Awards 2010 was held on Friday October 15 2010 at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Center, Malaysia.

This year, a total of 180 nominations from 16 member economies for 16 categories. “From a small member base of 5 countries in the first International APICTA Awards, we have now grown to include 17 nations across the Asia-Pacific region, most recently adding Taiwan to our ranks,” said Sutee Satanasathapon, Chairman of APICTA. The 16 member economies of APICTA are Australia, Brunei, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Korea, Macau, Malaysia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.

Since it started in 2001, the awards programme has recognized and rewarded the innovation of numerous ICT companies across the Asia-Pacific region. Past APICTA winners have contributed to the regional ICT Industry with two such examples being:

  • CyberPlanet Interactive Co. Ltd., 2004 Winner for Media and Entertainment, has become a public-listed company and expanded into China and Japan to become the largest console game developer in South East Asia
  • Les’ Copaque, 2007 Winner for Best Start-up Company, is now rated as one of Malaysia’s foremost production and animation houses with its flagship animation series, Upin & Ipin with broadcast in Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Brunei, Philippines, Vietnam, Hong Kong and South Korea.

Malaysia won 4 Awards

There are a total of 29 Malaysian finalists for this year’s Awards, consisting of 24 companies, 3 universities and 2 schools. Winners are judged based on these criteria:

  • Uniqueness
  • Market potential / value for public
  • Functionalities and features
  • Quality and application of technology
  • Presentation

In this year’s International APICTA Awards, a total of 4 Malaysian entries winning the following categories – Research and Development, Tourism and Hospitality, E-Learning, and E-Government. Singapore-based Ephone International Pte Ltd clinched two awards – Best E-Health and Best Start-up Company – for its product, EPI Life. Other notable winners are IP Payments Account Receivable Solution from Australia, which won the Financial Industry Applications category and Thai company, Geomove Co. Ltd. for their Sensor Service Grid application, which won the Tools & Infrastructure category.

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Coming soon: Facebook Credits available at retail stores in Asia

Facebook Credits virtual currency platform set to expand its payment options in Asia. Facebook and MOL Global just announced a strategic partnership to enable the purchase of Facebook Credits using MOLPoints, an online micropayment system developed and managed by Malaysia-based MOL, one of the largest internet companies in South East Asia.

Credits, the official virtual currency on Facebook, enables the purchase of gifts and virtual goods for games and applications on Facebook platform. Popular games like Farmville, Millionaire City, Hotel City, Petville, Bejeweled Blitz, Hotel City, Barn Buddy, Likeness and hundreds other games and applications are already accepting Facebook Credits (up-to-date list of games here). There are over 200 million unique Facebook users playing games each month. Soon, these social gamers can buy Credits using MOLPoints. And they can reload the MOLPoints through MOL’s network of over 500,000 physical (e.g. 7-Eleven, cybercafes, bookstores), online banking and mobile payment channels, in over 80 countries.

“The relationship with Facebook demonstrates MOL’s growing role as a leading payment provider for social networking sites in Asia, especially in our core countries of Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand and India,” said Ganesh Kumar Bangah, group chief executive officer for MOL Global.

He added, “Over the last few quarters, we have seen a double-digit increase in payment transactions and payment volume. This partnership continues MOL’s momentum to build the largest end-to-end content, distribution and commerce network in Asia.”

According to Vaughan Smith, director of business and corporate development at Facebook, “working with MOL means we can offer the benefits of Facebook Credits to millions of people in Asia using a payment system that is already widely used and trusted. We’re investing in the long-term future of Facebook Credits and we view this agreement as a major opportunity to broaden the availability of a simple, unified currency that can be used in games and applications across Facebook.”

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Fastest Growing Asian Countries on Facebook

facebook f8

These new figures are compared to the figures extracted in March 01 2010. Refer to table below: South Korea with the largest increase of 65%, between March 01 2010 and June 01 2010. Other countries with double-digit growth rate are Thailand with 28.3%, India 27.7%, Japan 21%, Pakistan 12.9%, Malaysia 12.3%, and Vietnam 10.4%. Compared to figures extracted in March 01 2010, total Facebook users in Indonesia and Taiwan have shown decline (not sure if it’s really declining or errors in figures extracted from or something else).

Between March and June this year, Thailand replaced Hong Kong as the sixth largest Facebook users in Asia, Pakistan replaced Singapore in no. 8 spot, and South Korea jumped from no. 13 to no. 11, replacing Vietnam. Also, Malaysia is fast approaching Taiwan to become the fourth largest Asian country on Facebook.

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