Get access
2 May 2024
#Mobile advertising

Mobile Advertising Trends in the UAE and KSA: Insights for Marketers

In the Middle East, there is a rapid digitalization underway. Technologies are increasingly becoming integrated into people’s daily lives, impacting content consumption habits and online time spent.

This trend is particularly evident in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Today, we will examine the digital market of each of these countries, analyze the mobile segment, and present other important statistical data.

DIGITAL 2024: SAUDI ARABIA

Population of Saudi Arabia in 2024

In January 2024, the population of Saudi Arabia reached 37.21 million people. Over the year, it increased by 532 thousand people, representing a growth of 1.4%. Women constitute 42.6% of the population, while men make up 57.4%. The majority of residents (over 85%) live in cities.

The average age of the population is 30.9 years. By age groups, the population can be divided as follows:

  • 21.6% of the population are under 18 years old.
  • 41.6% of the population are aged 18 to 34.
  • 34% of the population are aged 35 to 54.
  • 2.8% of the population are aged 55 and older.
Population of Saudi Arabia in 2024

Internet use in Saudi Arabia in 2024

According to the latest data, in 2024, there are 36.8 million internet users in Saudi Arabia. Overall, there has been a steady increase in internet users over the past 3 years. For the past year alone, their number has grown by 1.4%, and now 99% of the country’s population has access to the global network.

Of all those who use the internet, 97.3% prefer to do so through mobile devices, which only underscores the convenience of smartphones over desktops.

Internet use in Saudi Arabia in 2024

From which devices Saudi residents prefer to access the Internet

Data from DataReportal shows that over the past year, people have preferred to use the internet via any mobile device, with a percentage of 97.3%. Looking at other categories, the situation is as follows:

  • Desktop: 52.0% (-12.0%)
  • Smartphone: 92.2% (+0.8%)
  • Feature phone: 7.7% (-14.14%)
  • Smart home device 11.9% ( +20.2%)

These data vividly demonstrate the prioritization of mobile over desktop. Moreover, it’s interesting to note that only in the categories of mobile devices and smart home devices is there a noticeable increase in usage time, while in others, there is a decrease.

Of course, there is a decrease in feature phones, but experts suggest that these users are simply transitioning to smartphones.

devices used to access the Internet in KSA

How much people in Saudi Arabia spend online

Residents of Saudi Arabia spend an average of 7 hours and 9 minutes on the Internet, which is 10 minutes less than in 2023. Of this time, they spend 4 hours and 23 minutes on smartphones and 2 hours and 46 minutes on desktops.

The share of mobile internet usage is 61.4%, one of the highest values globally. It’s interesting that residents of KSA clearly prefer mobile usage, and this trend continues to gain momentum.

How much people in Saudi Arabia spend online

Share of web traffic by device in Saudi Arabia

When it comes to the share of web traffic, the situation is as follows: the mobile segment leads ahead of others. Web traffic from mobile phones accounts for 79.19%, with an annual growth rate of 3.4%.

Meanwhile:

  • Desktop: 19.67% (-11.9%)
  • Tablets: 1.08% (+0.9%)
  • Other devices: 0.06% (+50.0%)

Overall, since 2013, there has been a steady growth in mobile traffic, with only one year experiencing a decrease. This indicates a focus on the mobile market audience.

It is important for advertisers to recognize that people spend the most time on mobile devices. Therefore, it’s crucial to capture their attention and inform them about your business. This can be achieved through mobile advertising.

For instance, according to the same study, 72.7% of residents play games on their phones. These platforms offer excellent opportunities for placing your ads. If you’re interested in trying it out, feel free to reach out to us, and we’ll assist you.

Share of web traffic by device in Saudi Arabia

What types of apps are most popular in Saudi Arabia

On average, residents of Saudi Arabia spend 5 hours and 16 minutes using their smartphones. Social media occupies the largest share of time among app categories, accounting for 37.4%. It is followed by:

  • Entertainment apps: 34.7%
  • Utilities: 10.9%
  • Mobile games: 9.4%
  • Shopping: 1.2%
  • Other apps: 6.4%

These data underscore the significance of mobile applications in the daily lives of Saudi Arabian residents, highlighting their important role in communication, entertainment, as well as in accomplishing various tasks and purchases.

Mobile app market in Saudi Arabia

As of the beginning of 2024, there were 1.77 billion downloaded applications in Saudi Arabia, reflecting a yearly growth rate of 3.6%. During this period, users spent approximately $1.27 billion on in-app purchases and mobile applications themselves, which is 13.1% more than in 2023.

When it comes to the category of mobile games, users were most active in the following:

  • Roblox
  • PUBG Mobile
  • EA Sports FC Mobile 24 Soccer
  • Subway Surfers
  • Free Fire
  • Yalla Ludo
  • Call of Duty: Mobile
Mobile app market in Saudi Arabia

Digital advertising expenditures in Saudi Arabia

In 2024, advertising expenditures in Saudi Arabia grew to $2.34 billion, reflecting an increase of 8.4%. Particularly significant growth is observed in the digital segment, where expenditures amounted to $1.76 billion, increasing by a notable 11.9%.

Digital advertising expenditures in Saudi Arabia

The share of expenditures on digital advertising exceeds other methods, constituting 74.5%.

More specifically, in all categories except for social media, there is an increase in expenditures. The top 3 categories include:

  • Search advertising: $746 million
  • Digital banner advertising: $524 million
  • Digital video advertising: $188 million

The distribution between advertising on desktop and mobile platforms is approximately equal, with the share of expenditures on mobile advertising accounting for 49.8%.

Digital advertising expenditures in Saudi Arabia

Programmatic advertising in Saudi Arabia

Since the country predominantly utilizes advanced advertising methods, programmatic advertising has become one of advertisers’ favorite tools. In the past year, $1.40 billion was spent on programmatic advertising in Saudi Arabia, marking a growth of 12.7%.

Overall, programmatic advertising accounts for a significant portion, 79.3%, of all advertising expenditures, making it a key promotional method.

Programmatic advertising in Saudi Arabia

DIGITAL 2024: THE UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

Population of The United Arab Emirates in 2024

As of the beginning of 2024, the population of the United Arab Emirates was estimated at 9.55 million people. Over the period from the beginning of 2023 to the beginning of 2024, the population of the country increased by 76 thousand people.

In terms of gender composition, women constitute 30.9% of the population, while men make up 69.1%.

The majority of the population resides in urban areas: 87.9% of the inhabitants of the United Arab Emirates prefer urban life, while only 12.1% prefer to live in rural areas.

The average age of the population is 33.6 years. The population can be divided into four age groups in the United Arab Emirates:

  • 17.6% of the population is younger than 18 years old.
  • 33.6% of the population is aged 18 to 34 years old.
  • 41.9% of the population is aged 35 to 54 years old.
  • 7.5% of the population is aged 55 years old and older.
Population of The United Arab Emirates in 2024

Internet usage in the United Arab Emirates in 2024

According to the research, 9.46 million people in the United Arab Emirates spend time on the Internet, which constitutes 99% of the total population. Over the past year, the number of users has increased by 75 thousand people.

Of this number, 94.2% have access to the Internet through mobile devices.

Overall, since 2013, the number of internet users has been constantly growing, reflecting a high level of internet infrastructure and interest from the population.

Internet usage in the United Arab Emirates in 2024

From which devices people in the United Arab Emirates prefer to access the Internet

According to the statistics, similar to Saudi Arabia, mobile devices prevail over desktops. According to the data, the majority of users prefer to use the internet via mobile devices – 94.2%.

Next are:

  • Desktop: 74.2%
  • Smartphones: 92.8%
  • Tablets: 33.4%

Smartphones are the most popular devices for accessing the Internet. This is explained by their convenience and wide functionality.

The prevalence of mobile usage is evident in the time spent by residents of the United Arab Emirates online. While users spend a total of 8 hours and 11 minutes on the internet per day, 4 hours and 34 minutes are dedicated to using mobile devices, while only 3 hours and 38 minutes are spent on desktops.

Thus, the share of mobile traffic accounts for 55.7%, meaning that more than half of all internet traffic is generated through mobile devices. This is a clear indicator of user preferences and underscores the significance of mobile accessibility of content and services.

daily time spent using the internet UAE

Share of web traffic by device in the United Arab Emirates

When it comes to web traffic, only the mobile segment has seen growth, which has been evident over the past three years. As of the beginning of 2024, the share of mobile web traffic reached 75.30%.

For other categories:

  • Desktop: 23.67%
  • Tablet: 1.02%
  • Other: 0.01%

Mobile app market in the United Arab Emirates

In 2024, the total number of downloaded applications in the United Arab Emirates reached 572.6 million, which is 4 million more than the previous year.

Mobile app market in the United Arab Emirates

During this period, users spent approximately $549.8 million on applications and in-app purchases, marking an impressive annual growth of 26.5%. This is excellent news for advertisers, as it indicates a high level of user interest and trust in mobile app platforms.

This confirms that now is the perfect time to launch advertising campaigns in mobile applications using the BYYD platform. We offer banner, video, and Rich Media placements in applications across various categories, from utilities to games.

We invite you to explore our case studies and reach out to us via email hello@byyd.me if you have any questions.

mobile advertising in UAE

What types of apps are most popular in the United Arab Emirates

In the United Arab Emirates, people spend an average of 4 hours and 54 minutes per day with their smartphones. Social media applications occupy the top spot with a share of 44.4% of this time.

Following in popularity are:

  • Entertainment applications: 29.7%
  • Utilities: 10.9%
  • Mobile games: 7.9%
  • Shopping: 0.8%
  • Other applications: 6.3%

Regarding mobile games, the following are the most popular:

  • PUBG Mobile
  • Roblox
  • Subway Surfers
  • Candy Crush Saga
  • Free Fire
  • Clash of Clans

Digital advertising expenditures in the United Arab Emirates

The advertising market in the United Arab Emirates is quite significant: in January 2024, a total of $1.57 billion was spent on advertising, reflecting a growth of 6.6%. Out of this amount, $1.12 billion was spent on digital advertising, with an increase of 8.6%.

Overall, digital advertising predominates in the United Arab Emirates over other methods. The share of expenditures on digital advertising amounted to 71.2%. This is understandable: in the digital age, people spend a significant portion of their time online.

If we delve deeper into digital advertising expenditures, the top three leaders are:

  • Digital banner advertising: $406 million
  • Search advertising: $290 million
  • Digital video advertising: $213 million
Digital advertising expenditures in the United Arab Emirates

Programmatic advertising in the United Arab Emirates

In the past year, $796 million was spent on programmatic, indicating a good growth of 10.2%.

Overall, 71.2% of advertising is placed using programmatic methods. This once again confirms the effectiveness of this approach. Advertisers should pay attention to this.

By the way, if you want to learn more about programmatic advertising in the United Arab Emirates, we recommend checking out the relevant material. The article delves into the market trends, discusses user acquisition costs, and offers our forecasts for the future of the market.

Dodo pizza in UAE

Feel free to ask our specialists any questions you may have. We’re here to help and provide all the information you need. Take a look at our successful case studies to see how effective mobile brand promotion can be.

Found the information helpful? Share it with your friends and colleagues!

If you have any inquiries or are interested in collaboration, please contact us:

Popular posts
Comparing top app stores: Huawei AppGallery, App Store, and Google Play
8 May 2024
#Mobile advertising
Read article
4671
Mobile Advertising Trends in the UAE and KSA: Insights for Marketers
2 May 2024
#Mobile advertising
Read article
4482
How to grab users’ attention during the summer slowdown: 5 marketing tips
21 May 2024
#Internet marketing
Read article
1755