Hong Kong leads Asia in mobile Internet usage, with 96% of smartphone users using mobile Internet service on a daily basis, followed by Japan (94%), Singapore (93%), and South Korea (92%), said Google on Wednesday when releasing results of a survey.

Google commissioned market research firm Ipsos to conduct a global study covering more than 40 markets worldwide, as part of its Our Mobile Planet research aimed to understand smartphone usage patterns. In Hong Kong, Ipsos interviewed 1,000 local residents aged 18-64 during Q1 2013.

In addition, Hong Kong smartphone users have an average of 39 mobile apps installed with 10 of them being paid apps, the second highest in Asia. South Korea (40 mobile apps) leads the region in this area, while Singapore users have an average of 27 apps and Japanese users 36.

The study also indicates that Hong Kong smartphone users are active in using mobile Internet for video watching, with 91% of respondents saying they have watched video on their smartphones and 36% doing this at least once a day.

Transforming buyers' behavior

The use of smartphones has changed buyers' behavior and decision making process. Survey results show that 89% of the smartphone users in Hong Kong research on products or services.

Among them, 51% searched for the information at home and 36% did the search on-the-go. In addition, 22% of them searched for information when they are in a store--the number suggests that shoppers are turning to their smartphones for product information, rather than seeking it from shop staff.

In terms of completing a transaction, 43% of Hong Kong smartphone users made purchase with their phones and 62% of them make a purchase via smartphones once a month. Meanwhile, 51% said they tend to complete a transaction via computers and 47% bought at physical shops.

"In this multi-screen world, consumers shop differently across devices, with smartphones serving as the backbone of their daily usage," said Stella Cheung, Google Hong Kong head of sales. "Thus going mobile has become a business imperative."