Thailand is now the country in the world with the largest amount of time spent on the internet (including mobile internet). This is attributed to the increase in use of social media and the amount of time people are spending streaming videos online. In 2017 alone, the number of Facebook users in Thailand increased by 1 million from 2016 to 48 million, whilst the number of Instagram users increased to 13 million from 11 million. In this same time the Digital 2018 Global Overview, which was published earlier this year, calculated that Thai users spend an average of 9.38 hours per day on the internet, in comparison to other countries such as Brazil at 9.14 hours and South Africa at 8.32 hours. Mobile internet usage in Thailand was recorded at an average of 4.56 hours per day.
Smartphones are now becoming the dominant means of access to the internet for users in Thailand. The users in the country are the most active in the whole of Southeast Asia in regards to the amount of time spent daily on these devices and amount of data consumed. Information released in 2017 by the National Statistical Office of Thailand showed that upwards of 90 percent of internet users in Thailand access it via smartphones, with desktop usage coming in second, showing below 50 percent of users choosing this type of device to access the internet.
Thailand is now in the top 10 countries in terms of social media access via mobile devices and in the Top 4 with regards to time spent on social media in general. This explains why the country was eighth worldwide for number of Facebook users. Bangkok—the capitol of Thailand—is the city that sees the highest amount of active Facebook users, with more than 22 million active accounts at present. The number of active accounts on the top social networks within the country per capita is 67 percent in Thailand, ranking 8th highest in the world and much higher than the global rate of 39 percent. Penetration of another top social media platform—Instagram—is 19 percent just within Bangkok, whilst the global average remains at 11 percent.
The peak time for users in Thailand to access Facebook is 6pm to 11pm, with peak Instagram hours being 6pm to 10pm. However, most users are seen on Twitter slightly later with the peak hours being 8pm to midnight.
The most visited websites in Thailand are Google, Facebook and YouTube as to be expected, followed by Pantip.com, the political and current events discussion site and Sanook.com, the news and media website. However, one would assume that if gaming sites were available to Thailand residents, that established brands like SBObet would be competing in the list as well.
It is clear to see that internet usage is now at an all-time high in Thailand and is just set to continue to grow and the majority of this traffic will be via mobile devices.