40 million Americans use mobile Internet

The BBC reports on a study of use of the mobile Internet (the Internet on your phone!):

The US is the most tech savvy nation with nearly 40 million Americans — 16% of all US mobile users — using their handset to browse on the move. The UK and then Italy come a close second and third in the 16 countries surveyed by the analyst firm.

This will surely be quite important to the news organizations that survive the current crisis.

The nine-page report from Nielsen Mobile (PDF, 1.5 MB) says Nielsen analysts believe “mobile Internet has reached a critical mass as an advertising medium in the US. … with individual sites that attract millions of unique users. This provides scalable marketing potential with demographic breadth.”

This is the trend to watch:

Today 14 percent of US wireless subscribers have unlimited data packages, and 50 percent of data users say they would prefer to have such a package.

Checking out the skinny on service plans for the new iPhone, I was particularly interested in the data packages. I have a good deal now from T-Mobile on my BlackBerry, so I have to be convinced that the AT&T plan will be at least as good — or else, I’m not switching. ( “… the iPhone is the second most popular device among mobile Internet users …”; “the Motorola RAZR series phones are the most owned devices among mobile Internet users in the US.”)

From the BBC report:

[Nielsen] found that browsing habits differed between a PC and the small screen. “PC internet users visit more than 100 domains per month, on average,” the report said. “By contrast, the average mobile Internet user in the US visited 6.4 individual websites per month.”

Note that the Nielsen study did not include South Korea or Japan — probably because comparing THEIR mobile Web usage to that in the U.S. would make the U.S. look like it’s still in the Stone Age.

6 Comments on “40 million Americans use mobile Internet

  1. It will be interesting to see if this report leads more websites to create mobile and iphone-friendly versions.

  2. I’ve heard from some journalists in developing countries with low broadband penetration (in Africa particularly) that users are more likely to consume news content mobile device than a computer. It is a bigger challenge to get access to a computer with internet than a cell phone with internet.

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