Mobile internet usage in ThailandThe development of innovative features and technology in today’s mobile phones, combined with user preferences to access the internet, has made mobile phones one of the primary devices for internet use in Thailand. With leading mobile operators such as AIS, True Move H, and Dtac pushing for better 3G and 4G coverage across the country, mobile broadband performance and average speed in Thailand have continued to improve. In 2020, 5G was rolled out by AIS, making Thailand the first country in Southeast Asia to implement 5G networks in the region. True Move H and Dtac consecutively followed with their 5G implementation, with True Move H providing mid to high-frequency spectrums while Dtac provided only lower-frequency spectrums. As of 2022, AIS led in terms of 5G network availability in the central region of Thailand, displaying a more robust connection consistency in metropolitan areas, especially in Bangkok, compared to other service providers.
Popular mobile apps and the rise of app usage in ThailandIn addition to the continuous improvement in the country’s network infrastructure, mobile app usage has facilitated various aspects of daily life among Thai consumers. From convenient shopping experiences to finding future partners, Thais are incorporating mobile apps into their daily routines. Communication-based apps, specifically social media, remain the most popular app category among Thai users. Financial apps have also become widely used, especially for digital payments. This shift in consumer preferences toward banking applications has resulted in a continuous increase in mobile banking transactions, making way for the growth of the country’s FinTech sector.
Changes in consumer lifestyle have also influenced the decision to use specific mobile applications. For example, many consumers in Thailand have less time to socialize or meet new people, making it one of the leading reasons to use dating apps. Another critical factor attributing to the rise of mobile app usage was the recent COVID-19 pandemic since apps help facilitate social distancing regulations. Many Thai consumers had to rely on food delivery during the pandemic, as social distancing was one of the main reasons for increasing food delivery orders through mobile applications. Mobile app downloads in Thailand have thus skyrocketed, significantly integrating into a typical Thai consumer’s daily life and contributing to building new habits. Many services operating through mobile applications, such as food delivery and transportation services, are thus here to stay, becoming an integral part of Thailand’s growing digital services sector.