State of the Mobile Web, April 2008

Jon S. von Tetzchner

Opera has made Web browsers since 1995. When we decided in 1998 to squeeze our browser to fit onto mobile phones, we set out to preserve the same Web experience people expected on their computer. However, in those days the Mobile Web was limited and tangled in a mess of differing, competing technologies.

We have spent the last ten years fighting to change this. We believe that there is One Web. We believe there should be no difference in the information that is available to you whether you use the fastest computer or a refurbished mobile phone. Now in 2008, it seems we are getting closer to the goal of One Web.

I invite you to see some this transition for yourself in our first "State of the Mobile Web" report. We looked at the aggregate, anonymous traffic of more than 44 million cumulative Opera Mini users worldwide to see where they chose to spend their time when using the Web on their mobile devices. I hope you find this report useful, actionable and interesting.

I welcome your feedback and thank you for reading.

Regards/Vennlig hilsen/Kær kvedja...
Jon S. von Tetzchner
CEO, Opera Software

Highlights

  • Social networking stands supreme
    Almost 40% of traffic worldwide is to social networks. In some countries, such as the United States, South Africa and Indonesia, the social Web accounts for more than 60% of the traffic.
  • One Web will triumph over WAP content
    Full Web surfing comprises more than 77% of all traffic. Content on WAP and .mobi sites accounted for 23% of mobile Web traffic. This share continues to decline as more consumers both use Opera Mini to access rich Web content and become more comfortable browsing the Web on their phones.

Part 1: Growth

Cumulative Users

Opera Mini has become the world's most popular mobile browser. Since its worldwide launch in 2006, more than 44 million people have downloaded and used Opera Mini. More than 11.9 million people used Opera Mini in March 2008. In the last quarter, the number of people who downloaded and used Opera Mini grew 26% over the prior quarter in 2007.

Pages Transcoded

Opera Mini users viewed more than 2.4 billion pages in March. In the first three months of 2008, the number of pages viewed through Opera Mini grew almost 57% over the last quarter of 2007. In March, each person using Opera Mini viewed 202 pages on average.

Month Page views
January 2006 39,969,125
February 2006 70,119,707
March 2006 102,386,928
April 2006 123,915,618
May 2006 155,660,949
June 2006 183,518,205
July 2006 231,325,050
August 2006 268,738,912
September 2006 274,840,901
October 2006 336,044,711
November 2006 378,938,100
December 2006 423,503,600
January 2007 507,622,606
February 2007 540,701,179
March 2007 632,313,886
April 2007 705,063,025
May 2007 767,107,863
June 2007 788,283,659
July 2007 867,208,160
August 2007 907,690,600
September 2007 872,028,768
October 2007 1,192,916,658
November 2007 1,414,205,703
December 2007 1,558,566,188
January 2008 1,787,235,674
February 2008 1,883,751,325
March 2008 2,429,200,080
April 2008 2,491,451,387
Pages transcoded by Opera Mini per month

Data Consumed

As the content available to mobile phones improves, data consumption increases. Last month, those 11.9 million Opera Mini users generated more than 33 million MB of data for operators worldwide. This represents an almost 88% growth over the previous quarter.

Month Data transfer (MB)
January 2006 587,826
February 2006 759,338
March 2006 1,072,662
April 2006 1,334,715
May 2006 1,831,441
June 2006 2,127,142
July 2006 2,614,633
August 2006 2,979,209
September 2006 2,976,858
October 2006 3,692,282
November 2006 4,124,607
December 2006 4,652,547
January 2007 5,322,457
February 2007 5,573,556
March 2007 6,529,736
April 2007 7,264,413
May 2007 8,093,274
June 2007 7,984,642
July 2007 9,729,792
August 2007 10,379,959
September 2007 9,922,367
October 2007 12,491,633
November 2007 14,732,591
December 2007 20,129,575
January 2008 23,690,372
February 2008 26,521,524
March 2008 33,096,381
April 2008 35,636,188
Total data consumed per month (in MB)

Part 2: Content Preferences

By examining aggregate numbers, we are able to paint a picture of the types of sites and services that win on the mobile Web. Tracking the type of content across the top 100 sites visited by all Opera Mini users, we find:

  • Social networking is popular worldwide and is the leading source of Web traffic for mobile devices.
  • Successful sites on the Web find users on mobile phones, further underscoring the emergence of One Web.
  • Consumers desire a rich Web experience regardless of the device they use to access the Web. WAP continues to diminish as more-capable Web browsers are able to display full Web content on mobile phones.
  • Nearly a quarter of all traffic is headed to content portals or search engines.

Part 3: Country snapshots for April 2008

Snapshot: Russia

  • Russian Opera Mini users consume more entertainment content than users in all countries except for Ukraine. Traffic to entertainment, leisure and sports sites comprise almost 40% of Web traffic to mobile phones.

Top 10 sites in Russia

Russia
  1. www.vkontakte.ru
  2. win.mail.ru
  3. www.google.com
  4. www.rambler.ru
  5. www.yandex.ru
  6. www.dreamwar.ru
  7. www.mamba.ru
  8. www.marathonbet.com
  9. www.dimonvideo.ru
  10. www.wmod.ru

Snapshot: Indonesia

  • With 63% of traffic going to social networks, Indonesia is tied with the United States as the number one country for social networking on the mobile Web.

Top 10 sites in Indonesia

Indonesia
  1. www.friendster.com
  2. id.yahoo.com
  3. www.google.com
  4. www.peperonity.com
  5. wireless.getjar.com
  6. www.mig33.com
  7. www.mocospace.com
  8. www.itsmy.com
  9. gallery.mobile9.com
  10. www.kaskus.us

Snapshot: China

  • Web portal content and search engine access is extremely popular in China, accounting for nearly 55% of the traffic.
  • E-commerce and e-mail are not yet as popular in China as in other parts of the world. Together, these two categories combine to create less than 2% of overall Opera Mini traffic in China.

Top 10 sites in China

China
  1. www.sina.com.cn
  2. www.baidu.com
  3. www.google.cn
  4. www.ko.cn
  5. news.sohu.com
  6. www.xiaonei.com
  7. www.3g.cn
  8. www.paojiao.com
  9. www.188bet.com
  10. www.feiku.com

Snapshot: United States

  • More than 63% of U.S. Web traffic on mobile phones is to social networks, tying it with Indonesia for the number one spot.

Top 10 sites in the U.S.

United States
  1. www.myspace.com
  2. www.google.com
  3. www.mocospace.com
  4. www.yahoo.com
  5. www.facebook.com
  6. www.live.com
  7. www.hi5.com
  8. www.wikipedia.org
  9. www.itsmy.com
  10. www.ebay.com

Snapshot: India

  • India favors social networking, with nearly half (48.9%) of all traffic going to social networks.

Top 10 sites in India

India
  1. www.orkut.com
  2. www.google.com
  3. in.m.yahoo.com
  4. www.peperonity.com
  5. gallery.mobile9.com
  6. www.mocospace.com
  7. www.160by2.com
  8. www.mobango.com
  9. www.itsmy.com
  10. www.indianrail.gov.in

Snapshot: South Africa

  • A very high 61% of traffic in South Africa is to social networks.
  • South Africa has the second-highest penetration of e-mail access on mobile devices (more than 4% of the traffic).

Top 10 sites in South Africa

South Africa
  1. www.facebook.com
  2. www.google.com
  3. intl.yahoo.com
  4. www.peperonity.com
  5. www.mocospace.com
  6. www.gumtree.co.za
  7. en.wikipedia.org
  8. www.itsmy.com
  9. news.bbc.co.uk
  10. www.webmail.co.za

Snapshot: Ukraine

  • Opera Mini users in the Ukraine enjoy their entertainment and sports. More than 61% of traffic is in this category.
  • Mobile-optimized content remains popular in the Ukraine--more than 43% of Opera Mini traffic in the Ukraine is directed towards WAP sites.

Top 10 sites in Ukraine

Ukraine
  1. www.vkontakte.ru
  2. www.google.com
  3. www.darkworlds.ru
  4. www.mail.ru
  5. www.dreamwar.ru
  6. www.wmod.ru
  7. www.rambler.ru
  8. www.dimonvideo.ru
  9. www.mamba.ru
  10. www.marathonbet.com

Snapshot: United Kingdom

  • The United Kingdom is the world leader in mobile e-mail, although that number remains small. More than 11% of traffic in Q1 was to Web-based e-mail services.

Top 10 sites in the U.K.

United Kingdom
  1. www.facebook.com
  2. www.google.co.uk
  3. www.live.com
  4. www.bebo.com
  5. www.mocospace.com
  6. news.bbc.co.uk
  7. uk.yahoo.com
  8. www.itsmy.com
  9. www.faceparty.com
  10. www.ebay.co.uk

Snapshot: Germany

  • Compared to users in other countries, German users shop the most on Opera Mini. E-commerce accounts for more than 7% of German Opera Mini traffic.
  • German users of Opera Mini enjoy entertainment and sports content on their mobile phones. More than 28% of traffic heads to entertainment and other leisure sites.

Top 10 sites in Germany

Germany
  1. www.google.de
  2. www.studivz.net
  3. www.wer-kennt-wen.de
  4. www.jappy.de
  5. www.schuelervz.net
  6. m.web.de
  7. mobil.spiegel.de
  8. m.gmx.de
  9. www.lokalisten.de
  10. wap.sport1.de

Snapshot: Poland

  • In Poland, people using Opera Mini prefer to access the full Web from their mobile phones--only 4% of the traffic is to WAP or .mobi sites.

Top 10 sites in Poland

Poland
  1. www.nasza-klasa.pl
  2. lajt.onet.pl
  3. www.google.pl
  4. www.allegro.pl
  5. www.fotka.pl
  6. www.plemiona.pl
  7. www.bwin.com
  8. www.grono.net
  9. www.livescore.com
  10. pl.wikipedia.org

Other formats

Related resources

Contact

For more information about the State of the Mobile Web report, please contact Pål Unanue-Zahl palu[at]opera.com, +47 2369 2400.

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