Global Media Intelligence 2019: Vietnam

Key Features

Smartphones are central for the young urbanites who make up much of Vietnam’s emerging digital population. But wearables and smart-home options are also gaining in adoption.

  • Smartphone ownership among internet users ages 16 to 64 in Vietnam stood at 98.2% in H1 2019, according to GlobalWebIndex. Some 20.9% of those polled also had a feature phone.
  • The number of internet users owning a desktop or laptop PC slipped marginally between H1 2018 and a year later, to 70.5%. By comparison with smartphones and PCs, tablets played a lesser role; 33.9% of internet users owned one in H1 2019—but this relatively low figure isn’t surprising in a mobile-first country, where larger-screen devices were often an adjunct to a mobile phone. Tablet owners were more likely to be living in urban areas and in well-to-do homes. It’s worth pointing out that these figures don’t reflect penetration rates in the wider population; the sample surveyed in Vietnam skewed young and urban (see note below).
  • Uptake of several other digital devices is also high by global standards. Almost half of respondents owned a smart TV this year, and 15.0% owned a smartwatch. In addition, 12.7% owned a smart-home product, such as a system enabling users to monitor visitors remotely via a mobile app. All of these devices were more common among 25- to 44-year-olds.
  • Vietnam’s internet users have shown little interest in virtual reality (VR) headsets. Only 4.1% of those surveyed in H1 2019 owned one, though the share did reach 7.0% among respondents in the top 25% of households, ranked by income. Penetration of game consoles was also remarkably low, at 8.8% overall—though again, ownership was more widespread in urban and affluent homes, reaching double digits.


Karin von Abrams


Joanne DiCamillo
Kathleen Hamblin
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