A Telenor Asia survey of mobile users across eight Asia-Pacific markets found work was the primary driver of increasing usage, with a majority using their devices to pick up new job skills.

The operator quizzed more than 8,000 mobile internet users in Bangladesh, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam, finding 83 per cent believe smartphones have increased their workplace productivity over the past five years.

Almost 50 per cent believe a mobile connection would help them get ahead at work or switch careers, with 87 per cent stating the devices have improved or significantly improved work quality and performance.

More than 50 per cent stated said their mobile usage opened the door to learning new skills.

Head of Telenor Asia Petter-Borre Furberg stated “as mobile devices become increasingly central to our lives, so does the need for all stakeholders to continue understanding the people and parts of the ecosystem most at risk”.

“We must continue working with all stakeholders to ensure that people are educated and informed about online security risks, and create a safe online environment to allow all generations to take advantage of the potential of mobile.”

Privacy and security were cited as concerns by 90 per cent.

A majority believe they have balanced mobile usage, with less than 10 per cent reporting negative emotions such as anxiety.

Almost 75 per cent of respondent indicated their mobile usage helps them live more sustainably by reducing paper usage, providing access to education and information, and being more informed about daily life choices.

Some 34 per cent said they use a 5G connection most of the time, with video and music streaming the most common activities.