The number of Britons accessing the internet via mobiles phones has increased by 25%, from 5.8 million to 7.3 million, between Q2 to Q3 2008 according to the latest research by Nielsen Online.
But the Mobile Media View study found internet connection via PCs increased by just 3%, from 34.3 to 35.3 million Britons.
Mobile internet users were also found to be younger, with a quarter of them aged between 15-24, compared to 16% of the same age group using PCs to access the internet.
While 23% of the PC-based internet population is 55+, only 12% of the mobile Internet audience is.
Kent Ferguson, Nielsen senior analyst said of the findings, “The first insights from the launch of Mobile Media View confirm two things - that when it comes to the internet, the huge growth is now happening through the mobile platform and that the mobile online audience is younger than its PC-based counterpart.
The fact that almost seven and a half million Britons now access the web through their phone shows that mobile internet is fast becoming a viable way for advertisers and publishers to reach important demographic groups.”
The study also compared the most popular mobile internet sites – and how they perform on the PC-based Internet.
While Google Search is the most popular PC-based Internet site, on mobile Internet BBC News is the most popular, being visited by 24% of British mobile Internet consumers (1.7 million people)
Of the most popular mobile sites, BBC Weather (21% mobile, 17% PC-based) Sky Sports (11% mobile, 8% PC-based) and Gmail (9% mobile, 7% PC-based) have greater reach on mobile Internet than they do on the PC-based internet.
Of the most popular mobile sites, Google Search (23% mobile, 79% PC-based) and eBay (13% mobile, 43% PC-based) have the greatest reach differential between mobile and PC-based internet.
Ferguson concludes, “It’s interesting to see that BBC Weather, Sky Sports and Gmail are among the few sites that have a greater reach on the mobile internet than the PC-based Internet.
This highlights the advantage of mobile when it comes to immediacy; people often need fast, instant access to weather or sports news and mobile can obviously satisfy this, wherever they are.”
The fact that the most weather, sports, news and email sites make up the majority of leading mobile sites show that mobile Internet is mainly about functionality and need at the moment as opposed to the more entertainment and ecommerce-focused makeup of the leading PC-based sites.”
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