Deloitte released a research report “After Wave Attack: Emerging Digital Life in Southeast and South Asia” on the 2nd, showing that with the outbreak of COVID-19, the demand for digital services in the region has soared, and 78% of the respondents said that they had increased the use of digital services.
The above-mentioned survey was conducted in August this year. More than 2,000 consumers from eight countries, including Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, India, Bangladesh and Pakistan, participated in the survey, ranging from 21 to 60 years old.
The report shows that 41 percent of respondents said there was a substantial increase in the use of digital services, and 37 percent said it had increased. Respondents with substantial increases in the use of digital services are mainly from Bangladesh, the Philippines and Indonesia. Specifically, demand for TV programs, online games, e-commerce, social networking, online office and distance education has increased significantly.
The core of digital life is digital payment. According to the survey, the three most common digital payment scenarios for consumers in Southeast and South Asia are e-commerce/mobile commerce, peer-to-peer transfer and in-store purchases, and the transfer amount is usually small. The main reasons why digital payments are popular are convenience, contactlessness and discounts. According to the analysis of the report, digital payment is very popular because of the high use of mobile phones and strong signal coverage in developing countries in the region, but the penetration rate of banks is very low.
It is worth noting that although e-commerce is loved by people in Southeast and South Asia because of its high speed and convenience, wide range of products and good quality and low price, research shows that most people only shop online when necessary. Among them, Singapore, Indonesia and the Philippines have a relatively high proportion of online shopping. In countries such as Pakistan, the proportion of people who have never had online shopping is still as high as 25% of the total population.
Xu Sitao, chief economist of Deloitte China, said that on the macro level, digital life has made outstanding contributions to the economic development of the two major regions. However, countries in Southeast and South Asia also need to fill gaps and deficiencies in digital infrastructure, encourage the adoption of electronic payments, provide services to people with low access to banking services, strengthen network security, cross-regional communication and collaboration, and promote the construction and talent training of local digital innovation ecosystems.