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Brits adopt smartphones for in-store price comparison

13 July 2012 - 10:18 by Graham Miller

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Almost a third of UK consumers are taking advantage of their web-enabled smartphones to check the prices of various products and services while they are out and about on the high street.

This is according to a study conducted by GfK, which found that 30 per cent of consumers take advantage of m-commerce services while in bricks and mortar outlets, in order to make sure that they have made the best decision in relation to how much a particular item costs.

Eighty nine per cent of respondents to the survey said that they compared prices on a smartphone because they wanted to spend the least amount of cash possible during their shopping trips.

This habit could potentially be troubling for companies that exclusively offer safe shopping online, because it seems to leave them out of the equation.

However, the study also revealed that 84 per cent of people with a high end mobile handset will purchase items via the internet. This is compared to the 75 per cent proportion of the wider British public who also involve themselves in e-commerce, suggesting that smartphone owners are fundamentally more web-savvy.

The end result is that people with smartphones will be happy to head to the high street and spend cash, as long as they can compare prices on the fly, while also being capable of indulging in safe shopping online when the mood takes them.

People in the UK as a whole are more competent when it comes to web-based matters than their European counterparts, according to a study published by the IAB this month. It found that 81 per cent of British adults regularly use the internet, compared to a continental average equating to two thirds of people over the age of around 18.