An increasing number of Indians are turning to their smartphones for Diwali shopping and sending money and gifts to loved ones this festive season, a study by SwiftKey (part of Microsoft) said on Monday.
According to the study by the keyboard app provider, more than two-thirds (70 per cent) of respondents who polled said they will make most or all their Diwali-related purchases via their mobile devices this year. Also, 36 per cent said they plan to also gift money using their smartphone during the festival, while 30 per cent said they are opting for virtual gift sharing.
Over 1,500 respondents across Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Jaipur and Bengaluru were included in the study. “…18-44 year-olds are using technology to reach out to their friends and family to celebrate Diwali in exciting new ways. It is amazing to see people taking generic emoji such as footprints and imbuing them with a deeper, culturally-specific meaning,” Aarti Samani of SwiftKey India said.
The study found 84 per cent saying that they think smartphones helped improve the celebrations, while nine out of 10 said emojis helped them better express their festive spirits. About 84 per cent respondents said they intended to use Diwali-themed filters on photo-based social media like Snapchat and Instagram.
“As smartphone uptake accelerates across India, there will be even more opportunity for communities to join together in virtual festivities around the country’s biggest cultural moments,” Samani said.