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 Friday, May 15, 2009

More than half (52%) of mobile phone users are now using the mobile Internet with email and social networking the most popular activities, according to new findings released today. The mobile Internet usage poll, carried out by user experience consultancy, Webcredible, revealed that of the respondents who used the mobile Internet, over half (55%) mostly used it for emailing and social networking, demonstrating the evolution of mobile Internet usage since the poll was last conducted in 2007.

The research polled more than 1,100 online users between February and April 2009 on what they used their mobile phone for most, with the exception of calls and text messages. Checking email and social networking came in as the most popular pastimes with 39 per cent of mobile Internet users mostly using email and over 16 per cent favouring social networking. Just under 16 percent of mobile Internet users said they mostly downloaded ringtones.

This shows a clear development from a similar survey carried out by Webcredible between August and October 2007, when downloading ringtones was the most popular pastime among mobile Internet users with 43 percent favouring this. Only 21 percent of these users mainly checked email, and social networking didn’t even register. This change in results clearly demonstrates the evolution in the capabilities of the mobile Internet and the related change in user behaviour.

In addition, the 2009 research also revealed that 13 percent of mobile Internet users mainly used it for reading news or sport content, 12 percent used it for maps and directions and 4 percent mainly used it for local or travel news. Nearly half (48%) of total respondents said that they performed none of these tasks on their mobile phones.

Abid Warsi, Senior Consultant at Webcredible comments, “Although there are still a substantial number of people who use their mobile phones for nothing other than calls and texts, these results clearly demonstrate the evolution of mobile Internet usage in-line with the increase in the ease with which mobile phone users can access the Internet, the increase in speed and technological capabilities, as well as the decrease in cost.”

“Social networking sites are helping the mobile Internet reach its tipping point. We are now seeing an increasing number of people taking a real multi-channel approach to their communications with the growth in the use of email, Facebook and Twitter on the mobile, no doubt assisted by newer, technically advanced handsets like the iPhone.”

Research Methodology

The mobile Internet usage research polled 1,132 visitors to the Webcredible website between February and April 2009.

Source: Cellular News.