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December 14, 2006 at 11:35 AM

Social networking goes mobile

A lot of companies are trying to duplicate the hysteria of MySpace on the mobile phone, but in many cases it seems like early days.

M:Metrics, a Seattle research firm, released a report today that examines the behavior of 13- to 17-year-olds and 18- to 24-year-olds in France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States when it came to photo messaging, video messaging, IM, chat, dating and user-created content, and other services on the phone.

It showed that teens are interested in taking their online social habits mobile.

“Much as teens were the early adopters of PC-based social networking applications, they have proven to be the innovators in the mobile arena,” said Paul Goode, vice president and senior analyst at M:Metrics. “Although teenagers and young adults make up only six to 10 percent of mobile subscribers, they generate more than their fair share of mobile content.”

In the U.S., 36.7 percent of those between the ages of 13 and 17 generated their own content, or used a social-networking application from their phone in October. In the older demographic segment, the results were even higher at 45 percent.

In Italy, the results were 69.7 percent and 63.6 percent, respectively.

Photo messaging to another phone was the most popular category of user-generated content, with 19.9 percent of Americans reporting they had used the feature in October. Sharing videos captured by a mobile phone was also very popular.

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