Browser Usage Up Among Smart Phone Owners

Posted by at 9:08 pm on October 1, 2010

comScore has released a report on mobile application and browser usage among Smartphone subscribers based on data from its comScore MobiLens service. The study found that the number of Smartphone users accessing mobile content through browsers and applications now surpasses that of Non-smartphone users. In the 3 month average ending August 2010, Smartphone subscribers made up 60 percent of those who used a downloaded application and 55 percent of those who used a browser. The study also described the demographic profile and top content categories for Smartphone subscribers accessing applications and browsers.

App and Browser Usage by Mobile Device

In August, 75.6 million mobile subscribers ages 13 and older used downloaded applications, with Smartphone users representing 60.4 percent, up from 43.6 percent in August 2009. For the same period, 80.8 million mobile subscribers used their browser, with Smartphone subscribers comprising 55.5 percent, up from 41.4 percent a year ago.

“That Smartphone owners now represent the majority of the U.S. mobile audience accessing downloaded applications and browsers represents a watershed moment in the industry,” said Mark Donovan, comScore senior vice president of mobile. “Although Smartphones still make up less than a quarter of the U.S. mobile market, they are generating the lion’s share of mobile content consumption. With Smartphones’ share of the pie destined to get greater over time, marketers and content providers should begin to shift their focus towards developing with primarily these devices in mind.”

Female App/Browser Users on the Rise

In August 2010, males accounted for 56 percent of smartphone subscribers who used downloaded applications or browsers. Females however are narrowing the gap with the remaining 44 percent, representing a 5.5 percentage point increase versus the corresponding August 2009 period. Among the various age segments, 13-17 year olds are exhibiting the strongest growth in using downloaded apps or browsers, up 1.4 percentage points versus year ago to 6.9 percent of the audience. Persons ages 18-24 are also accelerating adopters of app/browser usage, representing 16.7 percent of the audience, a 0.6-percentage point increase.

Weather and Search Represent Top Content Categories

Weather and maps represented the top content categories accessed through downloaded applications in August, used by more than one-third of U.S. smartphone subscribers. Social networking applications were used by 30 percent, while search and news applications were used by 18 percent.

Search was the most popular category accessed through browsers, reaching 54 percent of the smartphone audience. 43 percent of smartphone subscribers accessed social networking sites via browser, followed by news (40 percent), weather (36 percent) and sports information (32 percent).

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