Study: mobile web usage overtakes desktops for the first time

Here’s an interesting fact from a recent study - more people around the world access the internet from mobile phones and tablets than desktop computers. That’s the first time mobile devices have overtaken PCs and laptops.

Research company Statcounter tracked internet use across 2.5 million websites in October, and found that 51.3% of pages were loaded onto mobile devices. Compare that to 2010, when less than 5% of pages were accessed from mobiles and you can see how the landscape's changed over the last few years.

Most of the traffic (46.5%) is coming from mobile phones, with tablets accounting for just 4.7%. Mobiles are particularly popular in developing countries like India, where it makes up three quarters of pages.

In more mature markets like the UK though, desktop computers still rule the roost, comprising 55% of web traffic. The gap between it and mobile is shrinking though. Statcounter's research shows that back in October last year, only 37.74% of pages were loaded on mobile devices.

The surge of mobile web use isn't surprising when you consider how faster and more convenient it can be than a desktop or laptop computer, but it does raise certain challenges for businesses operating online. If nothing else it shows that businesses need to make sure their websites are designed to accommodate mobile users.

As Aodhan Cullen, the CEO of Statcounter, said: "This should be a wakeup call especially for small businesses, sole traders and professionals to make sure that their websites are mobile friendly. Many older websites are not."

Source: TechCrunch

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