Daily Mobile Internet Use Soars

Mar 16th, 2009 | By | Category: iPods & Portable Media Players, Mobile Podcasting

Information released this morning by digital measurement company ComScore says that people’s use of mobile devices for accessing news and information on the Internet “more than doubled” from January 2008 – January 2009.

Over a third (35 percent, or 22.4 million) of the 63.2 million people who accessed news and information on their mobile devices in January 2009 did so daily. That figure is more than twice the size of the audience last year, when an estimated 10.8 million people used their mobile devices daily to get news and information from the Internet.

“Over the course of the past year, we have seen use of mobile Internet evolve from an occasional activity to being a daily part of people’s lives,” observed Mark Donovan, senior vice president, mobile, comScore. “This underscores the growing importance of the mobile medium as consumers become more reliant on their mobile devices to access time-sensitive and utilitarian information.”

News and information are still, by far, the most-viewed categories for daily mobile web access, with 22.4 million daily unique users in January 2009 (up from 10.7 million in Jan ’08), a 107% change.

Social networking and blogging sites experienced the same explosive growth among mobile Internet users as among the general computer-using population. These sites ran a distant second to news and info sites among “most-viewed” categories, with 9.3 million daily unique users in Jan. ’09. However, this category marked the most dramatic increase — a 427% change over the 1.8 million unique daily mobile users in this category in January 2008.

The four other top categories that grew the fastest for daily mobile web access were:

  • Stocks and financial info (up 188% from last year, 3.3 mil daily unique users 01/09),
  • Movie information (up 185% from last year, 3.1 mil daily unique users 01/09),
  • Business directories (up 161% over last year, 2.4 mil daily unique users 01/09),
  • Entertainment (up 160% over last year, 5.5 mil daily unique users 01/09).

What are the implications of this for media organizations?

Mobile device owners are keenly interested in getting news and information (the province of “old” media like newspapers, radio, and tv) via their phones and portable media doo-hickeys. Old media, newspapers and magazines in particular, are in a state of declining revenues and rising expenses, some might even say a state of crisis. Perhaps focusing on making these sites easier for mobile users to, well, use can be a bigger part of the “old media” retooling.

For new media: accessing social networking and blogging sites, as a category, has mushroomed among daily mobile web users. That category is growing far more quickly than any other on the comScore report. How is your organization taking advantage of this boom time? And what will you do to maintain users’ interest, once the boom time is past?

Finally, for old and new media alike: Some of the fastest growing categories among daily mobile web users are staid and rather boring sites like movie listings and entertainment info, financial sites and business directories. How can news, information, social networking, and blogging sites capitalize on this less-glamorous but growing part of the mobile web?

If you have brilliant ideas, please weigh in in the comments.

Photo: 1000 Mobiles by Gaetan Lee

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No Responses to “Daily Mobile Internet Use Soars”

  1. Niaz Khan says:

    send me new information

  2. Guest says:

    This is easy. Already newspapers such as the NY Times or USA Today already have sites up and running with news where that would take on importance for the businessman who doesn’t have time to pick up a paper but can check easily on his mobile phone through internet access. These newspapers should easily be capitalizing on their sites because people have to pay for internet access for the phones in order to look at the sites. The same could be said for social networking or blogging sites. People whom choose to have internet on their phones have to pay for the plan so in reality shouldn’t the cell phone companies be giving a cut to the certain sites that the consumers are getting as part of the internet plan? I would think so. Or if they are not, then the sites such as the newspaper that have a charge on them if bought a hard copy should have a subscription charge for the website so that they gaining some kind of income off of the news that they provide. Also, for just looking for simple information such as movie listings or addresses, there could also be a subscription charge as well that way these sites or companies providing the information to the sites could be gaining income as well. It may not be large at first but soon enough more and more people will want to use it. In this day and age, it’s pretty obvious that more and more people are buying phones with internet access to have the internet in the palm of their hand for that quick look up of information or news. It’s a simple as that.

  3. Guest says:

    Websites that concern seemingly every day topics like news, other general information, social networking, and blogging can write and create apps or similar functioning applications and offer them to the masses for little or no charge to consumers and users. These every day normal information portals may seem boring or “staid”, but when made more readily available, as would be in cell phone friendly applications of these sites and the information they offer, they are not quite as boring, and can actually become increasingly handy and even more widely used. These sites, ones that offer general information, whether about movies, financial information, business updates, recent news, or about our social networking relationships, these are the sites that are used most, and the best thing the companies behind these sites can do is to create the applications or the programs that can go with the people who use them so often. A so-called “boring site”, becomes much more exciting and appealing when one is able to access it from almost anywhere, but most importantly, it becomes a convenience and perhaps, even, a necessity, to stay updated and have all the, “boring”, but most relevant, information in our daily lives.

  4. Guest says:

    A question that I feel is in the text of this article without being directly asked is; How is it possible that people who access the web through their mobile device find it more appealing than using a computer where the information looks better, and is more appealing? I find it hard to believe that people would rather search the web on screens that are a mere 2.5 inches. Personally I am a computer guy, I would rather be in front of a computer any day, however I do believe the biggest reason that the percentages of people using mobile devices to access the web have more than doubled is for just that reason, its mobile.

  5. Guest says:

    Devices such as I-phones and PDA are able to fit right into your pocket. Today’s society has become very fast paced. Things like fast food and less sleep are becoming more common. This is especially true for my age group. Therefore we might not be sure when we will get a minute to access the internet. However if we always have the web with us it does not matter where or when we might have some time to check-up on our favorite web pages’ News, weather, stock markets, and social networking sites. So for now I’m not a fan of accessing the web using a mobile device, however as my world keeps spinning faster I might find it a more convenient way.

  6. Sara Thompson says:

    In the United States we live in a capitalistic society, where it is all about money and who gets their share. Also we live in an era where technology is always evolving with new services everyday that are free the new question is “ How can news, information, social networking and blogging sites capitalize on this less- glamorous but growing part of the mobile web?” Well since people don’t pay for newspapers any more or buy magazines they access the information found in these sources online without paying, there is an issue of how are these companies supposed to stay afloat without income for the business. Since our country is in a recession it is necessary for people to pay for these free services that they use via mobile devices. News companies, information providers, social networking sites and blogging sites should set up a pay system in order for people to be able to access them via their mobile devices and these companies can capitalize on the usage. If people pay for this service then the company is getting their share and people are receiving a service, just like if you go to a store to buy a newspaper for the information in it when people access it via their mobile devices they should pay for the information on it.

  7. Guest(part1) says:

    The question I chose to answer is “And what will you do to maintain users’ interest, once the boom time is past?” This question I think is important when you look at it because in our culture many things can become a fad easily if it is not maintained. When it comes to the internet however, it has become a part of daily life. A lot of the things that are creating the “boom” with using mobile devices for internet access are becoming a tool for daily life. When someone daily gets the news from their phone instead of the newspaper, this is contributing to the boom.

  8. Guest(part2) says:

    But once you can get your news on your phone, and make it a habit, there is little reason for you to go back to the newspaper. I think a lot of what is key here is maintenance and regular advancements. If your needs are met with the most connivance through your phone, the main issue would be getting people to see that it is possible. As technologies advance we are able to compact the size of the things that make viewing the advance internet possible. Because of this a lot of the internet is viewable from you phone and I can only see more advancements in the future. The internet on your personal mobile device is a constant connection to the internet that people are becoming more and more dependent on and because of this I believe that what we see today is only the start.

  9. donovan mclean says:

    Mobile internet access is a growing product in the world today. The number of people using mobile internet is growing every day. According to podcasting news the number of mobile internet user “more than double from January 2008 – January 2009”. It’s the new hot thing on the market if you ask me, putting your whole computer into a cell phone. The world today is a very fast pace so people need devices that can keep up with their lives and the mobile web access is one of them. I know that the sites on the mobile internet are not as pretty as the regular computer sites but they get the job done. I say “if u can check your email from your car and not have to find a lab then that saves you time and time is money. I think that the news, information, social networking, and blogging sites can capitalize easy if you ask me. I don’t think that people will be looking for the same pretty sites that they get on a desktop computer.

  10. Clinton says:

    An implication for media organizations such as periodicals, newspapers, the television and radios are that there usage is slowly declining due to mobile access. Some magazines are even in financial crisis because people are using there phones to get the news and read the magazine digitally. However there may be a huge spike in mobile access I doubt that the TV, radio or newspaper will be going away any time soon. I feel this way because there is still a large percentage of the baby boomer generation who would prefer to watch, listen, or read about the days news without having to pull out an iPhone or other pda device. Another implication is that the magazine companies are in financial crisis; I think this is true because who reads a magazine when they can use there phone. I used to read a magazine when I was at a place like a doctors office but now because of my mobile access I can pass up last months People. Also I think because of the down turn in magazine sales they have to raise there prices and with this tough economic time people are just paying the extra for there phone instead of a 12 month subscription to there favorite magazine.

  11. Megan Barnes says:

    Seeing how the use of the web on mobile devices has increased drastically, people seem to access their information from anywhere as long as they have their phone with them. The news is a perfect example of that. When major events happen that can affect the world and you don’t have time to just go home or to a local place for internet usage, your mobile device can act like a Bible to some people. It is what they get their information off of. It is what they rely on. It is their new way of life.
    Mobile web is very useful for when you need information quickly and don’t have a computer to turn to. Need to know what time a movie is playing at your local movie theater? Turn to your mobile device and access the web and you can find all of your information without having to run back home. Don’t have directions to a relative’s house that lives across the state? Look up directions on your mobile device.
    All the time, you see people using the Facebook Application on their cell phone. It is a very useful thing to have when trying to keep in touch with friends that post things on your wall. For example, If friends or family are training for the army, many don’t have easy internet access so they turn to their phones to keep in touch with loved ones.
    Blogging is a great thing that can be viewed on your mobile device. Have a question or need an opinion on a certain topic? Blogging on your mobile device can keep you up-to-date when you’re out and about and don’t have the time to sit at home to find the information you need right away.

  12. Megan Barnes says:

    All in all, our society is all about speed and access. In New York, everyone rushes around and can’t find the time to do what they need. With these mobile devices that can connect to the web, you could say that it makes life a lot easier especially when you are getting information off the web on a device that is wireless and can fit in the palm of your hand.

  13. sam says:

    It’s crazy to see that big of a change in mobile web just over the past year. I can see why people use their mobile web because sometimes it’s easier to just use your phone instead of sitting down at a computer if you don’t have to time. I think that news, information, social networking, and blogging sites can capitalize on growing part of the mobile web by making people notice them more. People are going to go on their mobile web to just get information hence the reason there is a growing category in financial sites, movie listings, and financial sites. Once you catch someone’s attention they will soon be sucked into it. If you can create a way for someone to get a glimpse of a social networking, blogging sites, and news sites then the mobile web users will start to look at those sites and use them. A lot of people use social networking blogging now days on the web so if they can access it easy on their phone people will start to use those sites on their phone. These kind of sites need to be active and make people want to visit their sites on their phone like people do with the more boring sites.

  14. stephanie says:

    How can news, information, social networking, and blogging sites capitalize on this less-glamorous but growing part of the mobile web?

    The news and information I the most productive to be involve in the daily basis by people, it became more reliant on people mobile devices. It’s been growing more and more from time to time, the more new release of phone with applications on it the more people would want to get it because of what you can do with it. Of course people would want a phone like a computer, is like having one on the go but most likely is a phone. All of these categories substance under the growing part of the mobile web people that’s what people want and do, it’s a faster way to do social networking using the internet on point.

  15. stephanie says:

    Being that this is the new media; social networking and blogging sites can be a bit more active than to just have the old media like back in the days, having radios to her the news, buying newspaper every day, is like wasting your money buying newspaper all the time if you could just have your mobile devices on you. These categories capitalize on this less glamorous but growing part of the mobile web because it’s the newest media mobile web you want and is the fastest way to do anything rather to have to old media.

  16. Guest says:

    Like this article mentioned,” the percentage of accessing social networking sites alone from a mobile internet device rose 427%.” That is awesome for so many companies and for so many people. You also have the news and information categories growing too at over 100% for each of them as well. Cell phone companies have to absolutely love this because more and more people are putting internet on their phones to keep up with day to day information. This is a growing interest that isn’t going to fade anytime soon because more and more phones and digital devices are becoming better and better so using the internet on them won’t be as difficult. I know with my phone I can access some things, but it’s a real pain most of the time just to check my e-mail from my phone.

  17. Anna says:

    1 of 2
    It’s interesting to see that the “less-glamorous” sites are viewed more than ones containing news, information, and entertainment. It seems as though it doesn’t matter whether the site is glamorous or not, but people prefer a site for what information the site provides. Most social networking and blogging sites tend to strive for visual appeal and entertainment interests. Typically people enjoy this part of mobile web usage, but it’s not something that they require on a daily basis. The less-glamorous sites don’t need to spice up their appearance because they know that people access these sites for the information.

  18. Guest says:

    (continued from above)

    The article also mentioned something about newspapers fading out. Personally I think newspapers are going to disappear altogether in the next 10-20 years. With everyone trying to save the environment and going green, newspapers would cut that cost dramatically. Therefore, it’d be more environmental and most likely cheaper to access the news from a mobile device. I think what they should do is perhaps make their websites a little easier to access from mobile devices. I would hate to put a price on these sites, but maybe it will even come to a point where websites will charge internet users for accessing their sites. I would think that would be a good way to capitalize on this massive growing.
    With these categories growing as fast as they are though, the websites would be smart to make their move now because in the next few years everyone will be accessing everything from a mobile device.

  19. Anna says:

    2 of 2
    It might be beneficial for the news, information, social networking, and blogging sites to focus more on the information they provide in order to get a more consistent usage from the public. If these sites are looking for daily access from users, they might consider including more of the “time-sensitive and utilitarian” information that people feel is necessary to know. With the combination of visual appeal, entertainment opportunities, and expedient information these sites would be very hard to compete with. By providing all of these services, a site would not only gain daily access from its users, but that might be the only site that an individual might need to go to for all of their mobile web needs.

  20. Jeff Wratchford says:

    As we can all see, more and more people are using their phones to access the web and retrieve information. It doesn’t matter if it is boring or not they will use their cell phones to access the stuff they want. Each and every person is interested in something different; it is because of this that everything including those boring sites. So, one way to capitalize on sites like financing is by making them more appealing to everyone. They could post some interesting blogs on financial subjects and see what people respond to. By doing this they can find out what people like and dislike then they can sell this information to certain companies that may be interested in it. They could also provide links to certain websites for a price. Anything can be interesting to the right person. If you want to attract people who are interested in movies and or entertainment, one could provide information about the most popular movies and stars on their sites to attract these kinds of people. When someone tries to look up their favorite star or movie they will get directed to your site. Once in the site they will need something interesting to read to keep them there.

  21. Kimberly Mills says:

    The organization is taking advantage by offering so many different information types and different things you can find in on the web. You can create so many things and post it on sites everywhere you go. Different things offer have come out and are affected different people in all surrounding areas. During the year the different social activity has greatly increased in the number of technology that people are using on a day to day basic. Social networking has technologies that are going to continue to grow over a long period of time. It’s how people communicate and express their different ideas and thoughts. Taking advantage of different programs like this is so greatly by the number or peoples that actual use the program that is created. It just like when maybe a son or daughter goes off to Iraq and the only way to communicate with them is by social networking and really making that a possible task to uphold. They really take advantage of that because it’s the only way that they can communicate with their loved one. To maintain people interest is just by making more social networking cites available and making blogging just a lot more efficient on the web and in really life.

  22. Kim Mills says:

    To create a place where people can talk about what they have been through or a different topic to discuss. Different things like this can be used in so many different ways. Things will just keeping getting newer as the day goes on so once something goes away something else will come back into our lives.

  23. Guest says:

    The article stated that many internet users are now accessing the internet off of their cell phones. This, indeed, is a new, rapidly growing phenomenon. With that, obviously, the sales of newspapers, magazines, etc. are deteriorating. Many people just get on their cell phones and open up the websites to save time. With everybody in a rush now a days, it seems more efficient for people to just hop on their cell phones to read major headlines rather than go buy a newspaper or magazines. Accessing the internet on a cell phone does actually cost money, but it does not cost a lot of money. Social networking, movie reviews, and the news are among the top sites visited.

  24. Guest says:

    PART II. These sites can most certainly take advantage of this. For social networking, it does not matter where or how the person is accessing their sites, just as long as they are accessing it. Also, many newspaper and magazine companies now have a website with the same information on the websites as in the newspaper and magazines. I do not think these companies care how consumers read their material, as long as it gets read. They can most certainly capitalize on this new way of accessing the internet. It would be beneficial for these newspapers and magazines to advertize that they can also be accessed on the web, whether it be by television, or even in their own ads. Also, these companies should figure out ways that maybe their sites could be more easily accessed on the web.

  25. Nadine D says:

    News, information, social networking, and blogging sites have and can continue to capitalize on this growing part of the mobile web. Most news stations that already have websites; they are making it so that you can access these sites from your mobile phone. It allows people to access information like the weather, news updates, and other important things on their phone instead of having to be at a computer. They can create their own apps so that if you have a phone such as the iPhone, you can download their app to access their site more easily, creating capital for themselves.

  26. Nadine D says:

    Social networking and blogging sites have begun to do this as well. You can download apps or pay to access the internet from your phone to access sites such as Facebook or blogging sites for a small fee; either a onetime fee or ongoing. With the millions of people that access these sites a day it can create quiet a large and booming capital. By tracking what things people are most interested in these companies can continue to change to meet the need of the consumer while building their capital at the same time. One way or another people are going to access the web through their mobile devices to get information quickly and have it on hand, whether it be the news, entertainment, social networking or blogging sites.

  27. Guest says:

    Many people today use their cell phones to access the web and to look up certain information where it can be found in a newspaper, television or the radio. These three ways are declining as the use of the mobile web is increasing. Some organizations do not know how to advertise their information on the mobile device. If people are using their phones more than just reading the paper, make a site where people can look at what has happened in the world. There of course are many sites that can provide this information. However not many companies would receive enough profit to make a site. Even though a cell phone isn’t as organized as a newspaper, you can still provide the information. Eventually people will just be using their cell phones for everyday usage. Start providing new ways to obtain that information. More and more people are buying this new iPhone which has all these applications. Make an application that is suitable to access news and information. People will be willing to buy that application since most of today’s people use their phone to look up information. Soon enough everyone will have some way to access the web on their phone. It is not hard to do it though, we just have to create new methods.

  28. Mackenzie Davis says:

    What will you do to maintain users’ interest, once the boom time is past?
    Not too difficult to figure out, they have their audience figured out. What new toy will they want to play with next, and how can we make them beg for it? Once this boom has past the industry will come up with the new “best way” to get on the internet. The tricks that the industry uses is finding way to convince people and then convince them that they are the most convent way. Meaning making access at the peoples finger tips then by using media and popularity they convince the people that this “convenes” is a must have. Once the secret is out and people are convinced that this new must have is going to make their life easier they eat it up like candy. So how will they maintain the user’s interest once the candy coding is licked off? They same way they always do they will find a new, better, tougher to lick off candy coding to hook their audience. As the saying goes it’s like taking candy from a baby! So you tell me do you feel like a child waiting for the next best to come along?

  29. GUEST!!! says:

    The mobile web has become something very common among many of us. I see it being the most common way to access information about social networking such as MySpace and face book. Also, when in need of information not all the time do you have access to newspapers or a computer for the internet will be available at the time, so looking at a mobile phone for the weather updates or movie times has become more common. People today have become overly busy bodies. People are always on the go, and in constant movement. The ability to access anything you need right at the palm of your hand has allowed our life to be easier yet more advanced. The less glamorous websites such as movie times, weather, and other news are still crucial. Being able to check the weather in a few minutes without having to read the newspaper or waiting for the 6 o’clock news is so much more convenient. The usage of mobile web access will soon be used daily among majority of people. People will choose to find their information threw phones and PDAs verses newspapers and computers.

  30. matt says:

    As the technology grows in some of our personal things such as our mobile phones, I think there is going to be a lot more of the internet usage. But there are some sites that are not as fun to go one but are growing. Some are face book and all of the other social networking websites blogging and news sites. But critics are worried that these sites are boring and after this Boom town affect is done on the use of the internet on your phone that there won’t be as many users
    I think I have the idea, make these people want to come back for more information. News papers and magazines grab people’s attention and pull them in to buy their product. So if this means that you have to find out the Dailey gossip of Brittney Spears and how she yet again is getting married. It’s something that draws people to the product, and with new critics posting funny things and daily items that people can find funny, it’s your main selling point. People might get bored with going to the site, but they won’t if they go to the site to get a good laugh

  31. guest says:

    The fastest growing categories of mobile internet access on a daily basis is more of the boring and less glamorous sites, the sites that people use for quick information they need right then and there. For example movie listing sites, or the financial sites. The news and social networking site can capitalize on this by realizing that people are not looking for the hottest and most magnificent sites when they use mobile access they are just looking for the fastest and easiest way to get what they want and or need. For example sites for social networking could take advantage of this new way of the internet by not having all the apps and background stuff on it and just have a mobile access link that just takes you to a list of things you need to do, Like email comment or leave a status message. News sites could just have headlines that come up to click on that are the top stories and you can view them, instead of having to search for something or deal with anything else. Today the world is in the right here and now way of living, and the easier and faster things are to use, the better they are to us. The glamour and attractions that were once need are not anymore, at times they are even more of a nuisance.

  32. GUEST(part one) says:

    It seems the new cool way to surf the web is no longer on the plain old boring computer but rather on your very own cell phone. The question the author posed in the article was how can news, information, social networking, and blogging sites capitalize on this less-glamorous but growing part of the mobile web? This question was in reference with the growing number of people checking on what they say are boring sites such as moving listing and entertainment information. So how can news, information, social networking and blogging sites capitalize on these kinds of websites?

  33. GUEST(Part 2) says:

    One solution for news and information sites is to have a section devoted to entertainment and the latest gossip. Also these news and information sites can have an add on that tells local movie listings in that persons area. Social networking and blogging sites in my opinion may have an easier time capitalizing on these so called less glamorous sites because of the social networking’s major growth throughout the years. The social networking sites could have applications that its users could use that would tell them about movie listings in their area. Also with the social networking site they could set up and application page that let people blog about the latest entertainment news and people could get their daily feed of entertainment news.

  34. GUEST says:

    As it grows more and more common, more people are beginning to turn to their phone to access the internet whether than a computer. A reason being is that it is more convenient, let’s face it you can’t just slip a computer in your purse of pocket. But in order to keep this content internet websites must keep channeling their “customers” to keep coming back for more. Such social networking devices like Facebook, there are many options you have that make it just like using a computer at home by being able to post blogs and pictures. Although you’re not able to view videos or be involved in the chat IM that facebook includes I still believe that it will not stop users from accessing this website. To keep everyone interested I think that cell phone companies will start having it be included in more plans and to make more internet based phones and have them cost less. Also maybe to be able to download music from the internet and have it somehow be linked to your own itunes. Also possibly if any website that has your interest maybe be able to have a text of some sort sent to your phone if the website has been updated.

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