Mobile Internet - Statistics & Facts

Mobile internet usage has worked its way into the daily life of smartphone and tablet users, enabling consumers to access and share information on the go. Mobile internet shows promising projections for the next future, as global mobile data traffic is expected to increase nearly a sevenfold between 2016 and 2021. As of February 2017, mobile devices accounted for 49.74 percent of web page views worldwide, with mobile first markets such as Asia and Africa leading the pack. Nigeria registered the highest rate of internet traffic coming from mobile devices; India, South Africa, Indonesia, and Thailand follow. The Americas and Europe have the highest mobile broadband subscription penetration rate, around 78.2 percent and 76.6 percent respectively. The global average stood at nearly 50 percent in 2016.


Mobile apps are increasingly popular during everyday activities. The two most popular app stores, Google Play and Apple’s App Store, have 2.8 and 2.2 million available apps respectively. With the large volume of apps available for consumers, marketers started to focus on mobile app retention other than acquisition. In 2016, about 23 of users abandoned an app after a single use, 27 percent users stopped using an app after two to five times, and 38 percent used the app more than 11 times before stop using the app. Gmail, Google Play services, Google Maps, YouTube and Google are the most popular Android apps worldwide, while Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Skype for iPhone were the apps with the highest reach among global mobile iOS users.

Social networking is one of the most popular activities of mobile internet users. Facebook, the most popular social networking site in the world, had 1.74 billion mobile monthly active users towards the end of 2016. Facebook Messenger is the second most popular mobile messaging apps. With about 1.2 billion monthly active users, WhatsApp is the leading mobile messaging app in the world. Other popular mobile messaging apps include QQ Mobile, WeChat and Skype. Besides social networking, mobile internet users also turn to their devices to watch videos. As of the fourth quarter of 2016, mobile devices accounted for 54 percent of online video views. The highest-grossing entertainment app title in the Apple App Store is Netflix, followed by Tencent Video.

Mobile commerce is going strong, as global mobile commerce revenue is forecast to increase from an estimate of just over 170 billion U.S. dollars in 2016 to nearly 694 billion U.S. dollars in 2019. During the fourth quarter of 2016, online orders which were placed from a smartphone had an average value of 115.52 U.S. dollars, while the average value of orders placed from tablet devices stood at 106.98 U.S. dollars. About 50 percent of mobile shoppers turn to smartphone or tablets for purchasing products because of convenience, and 46 percent opted for mobile platform to save time.

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