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South Korea Time Spent with Media 2019

Heavy Smartphone Usage Drives Time Spent with Digital

Time Spent with Media 2019

Forecasts for nine markets: US, Canada, China, France, Germany, Japan, Latin America, South Korea, UK; as well as mobile and social media time spent in the US

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About This Report
Smartphones are the primary internet access device for consumers in South Korea, and mobile internet activities will continue to drive gains in both digital and total time spent as time spent with most traditional media channels declines.
Table of Contents

Executive Summary

Although digital user penetration is already high in South Korea, the time that consumers spend with digital is still rising. That will help propel growth in total daily media time, even as time spent with most traditional media channels declines.

How long will consumers in South Korea spend each day with media in 2019?

On average, adults (ages 18+) will spend 7 hours and 36 minutes daily with digital and traditional media this year.

How much time is being spent with digital vs. traditional media formats in South Korea?

Adult consumers in South Korea will devote 52.2% of their total daily media time to digital platforms. TV, radio and print will account for the remaining 47.8%.

Is digital time spent in South Korea still growing?

Yes, and growth is largely being fueled by smartphone internet usage. Another driver of digital time spent is the increasing consumption of digital video content such as YouTube and Netflix. By 2021, video will account for 35.6% of total daily digital time in South Korea—the highest share of all countries we track.

How much time is being spent on mobile in South Korea?

Mobile now makes up 37.1% of total daily media time, inching closer to TV. Consumers are turning to their smartphones for video viewing, shopping, gaming and social media in this digitally mature market. Mobile will post the highest growth rates for time spent in 2019.

WHAT’S IN THIS REPORT? This report presents our latest estimates and forecasts for time spent with media in South Korea, including TV, radio and print, as well as digital usage. It also looks at some of the key trends driving media consumption.

An important note on how we account for multitasking in our estimates of time spent with media: If someone spends an hour watching TV (for example) and uses a smartphone to surf the web during the same hour, we count this as an hour of usage for each medium, and hence as 2 hours of total media time.

KEY STAT: Daily time spent with traditional media will decline, while time spent with digital will continue to make steady gains, thanks to increasing smartphone usage.

Behind the Numbers

Our methodology for our South Korea time spent with media forecast is based on an analysis of 668 metrics from 30 sources. This analysis involves the collection of third-party data—primarily survey data—from adult respondents, asking them about their media use habits. Data is also sourced from online and mobile activity tracking services, government data and interviews with industry experts.

Using a bottom-up analysis, we assess and analyze reported time spent with each device and media activity across various sources. And where definitions differ, the data is normalized and interpreted in terms of our definition (i.e., the population in South Korea ages 18 and older). The data is then aggregated with the time contributions from each device and media type to arrive at an estimate for average time spent with media per day.

In order to arrive at forecasts for growth rates by media and by device, this analysis is followed by extensive assessments of historical and expected future growth patterns with regard to device adoption, multiple and overlapping device usage, population and demographic factors, and competitors to existing devices and activities.


Jeane Han


Jaimie Chung
Associate Product Manager
Jasmine Enberg
Senior Analyst
Shelleen Shum
Director, Forecasting
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