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New Delhi:

While education and career development are top priorities for women Internet users in India, 40 percent of them fear irrelevant comments, being trolled and followed on smartphones which have become a preferred choice for them to remain online, a new report said on Tuesday.

While 44 percent of women in Indian metros access online content in English to improve their soft skills and stay “job-ready,” this focus is sharper among younger women between the 18-23 age group, said the Verizon Media survey conducted by Nielsen with 1,300 respondents in 12 cities.

Women users spend time online between 3 pm and 9 pm — a signal for brands on when to reach and engage with women audiences, according to the survey.

Across locations, younger women were found to access more content related to education, career growth, and skill development, while older women between 29-35 years of age accessed more online video content related to personal well-being.

“The internet is empowering a new breed of Indian women who are coming online and preparing to take their place in the workforce. The right platform and support as a community will enable greater inclusion, boosting participation of Indian women at the workplace,” said Nikhil Rungta, Country Manager, India, Verizon Media.

Smartphones are the device of choice for women users in India, with 60 percent of women accessing the Internet only on these devices. This number spikes to over 75 percent of women in Tier 1 cities.

According to the survey, women in India spend an average time of 145 minutes on their smartphones every day. Interestingly, women in Tier 1 cities spend about 25 minutes more on the Internet compared to women in metros.

Of the total women surveyed, nearly 80 percent of users access online content in English as well as local languages.

Given the popularity of video and OTT content in the country, there is a clear preference for watching videos over reading content online among women Internet users.

More than two-thirds of women surveyed had watched videos related to career development or social causes or personal well-being in the last one month.

Health and fitness are priority areas for them, especially for women in the 35 and over age group.

“Environmental conservation and child abuse-related content was rated as high-affinity content apart from education, women empowerment, and career development,” said the survey.

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