In Mobile Content World, Men Lead in Spending

The model of the young male early adopter seems to have fallen by the wayside with the rise of digital phenomena like social media, but according to research from Adobe Systems Inc., men were ahead in mobile.

In a few content activities, women led. They were 10 percentage points more likely than men to access social media via mobile, and about equal when it came to searching for local information, reading or posting to blogs, and playing games. But men’s hunger for content put them ahead in more than just sports; video, music and news were all primarily male-conducted activities.

Men and women were in a statistical dead heat in usage of maps and directions via mobile, but men dominated in all other travel-related activities, including research, price comparison and booking. The same was true in the financial services sector: Men were more likely to do every type of financial activity on their phones, whether it was simple stuff like checking bank-account balances or more complex transactions like buying and selling stocks and mutual funds.

Men weren’t just using more content—they were more willing to pay for it too. Adobe found that men were more likely than women to purchase every category of mobile media and entertainment content studied, including games, video, news and, of course, sports content. Overall, 53% of women said they had never paid for mobile entertainment content, compared with just 38% of men.

Mobile-commerce is also a male-dominated area. Women held their own in categories like clothing, shoes and jewelry—as well as toys, babies and kids—but men were never far behind and in many areas dramatically outpaced women’s purchase habits.

Overall, females were 11 percentage points more likely to say they had not made any mobile purchases in the past six months. Men also spent more on their mobile purchases, with 60% spending at least $250 in the past year, compared with less than half of women who reported the same.

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