Global Media Intelligence 2020: France

Key Features

Smartphone continue to widen the ownership gap with PCs.

  • In 2019, the share of internet users ages 16 to 64 in France who owned a smartphone finally surpassed the share who owned a PC, according to GlobalWebIndex. In H1 2020, that gap increased, with ownership levels at 95.1% for smartphones and 82.8% for PCs. As a result, age-related differences in smartphone penetration are no longer very substantial. Meanwhile, feature phones have become quite rare. Just 7.3% of respondents had one this year; owners were concentrated among internet users ages 55 to 64 and those living in lower-income homes.
  • Tablet ownership was up very slightly, at 50.5%. The share of internet users who owned a gaming console reached 41.9%. Smartwatches and smart wristbands also proved marginally more popular than in 2019, though penetration of both remained below 9%. Similarly, smart home products—such as remotely controlled energy monitors or security installations—did not yet reach 10%. Fewer than 4% of respondents had a virtual reality (VR) headset or similar device.
  • Nearly 30% of internet users said they owned a smart TV—a greater share than in H1 2019, but that was still well below the level reported in several other Western European countries. In Belgium, Germany, and Ireland, for example, ownership has been above 40% since 2019, and in Denmark it reached 49.9% this year.
  • Daily time spent with larger digital screens (desktops, laptops, and tablets) remained considerably higher than time spent with mobile devices, at an average of 3 hours, 12 minutes (3:12) and 2:10, respectively. However, PC time had remained static; mobile time had risen 23 minutes from the prior year.


Karin von Abrams


Anam Baig
Senior Editor
Joanne DiCamillo
Donte Gibson
Chart Editor
Kathleen Hamblin
Chart Editorial Manager
Dana Hill
Director of Production
Erika Huber
Copy Editor
Magenta Ranero
Senior Chart Editor
Hilary Rengert
VP, Research Strategy
Amanda Silvestri
Senior Copy Editor

"Behind the Numbers" Podcast