Asian consumers are as passionate about the digital technology they use to access and play music as they are about music itself, according to the results of a survey released May 30 at the Music Matters conference in Hong Kong.

Fifty-one percent of consumers said they would listen to music more if they owned an MP3 player or music-playing mobile phone, said Ian Stewart, MTV Networks Asia VP, research and planning, in presenting the results of a survey of just under 4,000 people between the ages of 15 and 34, and conducted in 10 Asian territories in April.

The survey, which was jointly conducted by MTV, advertising agency Branded and market-research firm Synovate (both based in Hong Kong), found that 56% of consumers had played music on a computer in the past month, while 53% had played music on an MP3 player in the past month.

But Stewart said traditional methods of music delivery should not be discounted, with digital technology living side-by-side with traditional forms of music delivery in Asian territories such as India and Indonesia, where Internet penetration is not as widespread as in other parts of the region.

Other highlights of the survey (which covered China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Korea, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan and Thailand) were:

* Twenty-seven percent of consumers in the region had downloaded and saved a song to their mobile phone in the past month.

* Thirty-two percent of males aged 15 to 24 said they are likely to download songs to their mobile phones -- the highest ratio for any of the demographics profiled in the survey.

* Consumers in China (39%), India (33%) and Malaysia (33%) are more likely than consumers in other countries in the region to have downloaded songs to their mobile phones.

* Seventy-one percent of Indians feel "very passionate" about music -- the highest ratio for any of the 10 territories. Meanwhile, just 27% of Hong Kong consumers -- the lowest figure among the territories covered by the survey -- feel the same way.