Mobile exceeds desktop as most used internet platform

Mobile has taken over desktop as the world's leading internet platform for the first time

The majority of worldwide internet usage in 2016 came from mobile and tablet devices, exceeding desktop for the first time, according to new research.

Research by StatCounter found that mobile devices accounted for 51.3% of all internet usage in October 2016 year-over-year, the highest it has ever been, overtaking desktops at 48.7%.

These figures vary considerably on a country-by-country basis, however, the research firm believes it should be a 'wake-up call' to businesses yet to adapt to changing internet habits.

"This should be a wake-up call, especially for small businesses, sole traders and professionals to make sure that their websites are mobile friendly, as many older sites are not," said Aodhan Cullen, CEO of StatCounter.

"Mobile compatibility is increasingly important not just because of growing traffic but because Google favours mobile friendly websites for its mobile search results," added Cullen.

Google has recently launched greater support for mobile business, as it was revealed a greater number of web searches using their engine come from mobile devices. In July the company released a 'Test Your Site' tool to help keep track of how mobile websites are performing compared to desktop.

What is clear is that many 'mature' economies such as the US and the UK still rely mostly on desktops to access the internet. In the UK desktop internet usage is at 55.6%, with mobile at 44.4%.

However, Cullen warns that although desktop remains the primary mode of internet usage in the UK, businesses wishing to seek opportunities in other countries should be aware of the dominance of mobile.

"Post-Brexit, UK businesses should be aware, as they look to increase trade outside the EU, that India, for example, has over 75% internet usage through mobile devices," said Cullen.

The majority of the countries in Africa, the Middle East, and one of the UK's biggest trading partners, China, have all seen mobile become the dominant mode of internet use.

Although many companies consider mobile as their 'other' platform, it may be time to focus more heavily on the platform, as the trend is likely to continue across the world.

Featured Resources

BIOS security: The next frontier for endpoint protection

Today’s threats upend traditional security measures

Download now

The role of modern storage in a multi-cloud future

Research exploring the impact of modern storage in defining cloud success

Download now

Enterprise data protection: A four-step plan

An interactive buyers’ guide and checklist

Download now

The total economic impact of Adobe Sign

Cost savings and business benefits enabled by Adobe Sign

Download now

Recommended

8 of the most secure web browsers
web browser

8 of the most secure web browsers

25 Sep 2020
COVID-19 and Brexit are rendering AI models redundant
Data & insights

COVID-19 and Brexit are rendering AI models redundant

23 Sep 2020
Federation of small businesses says tech vouchers needed to survive Brexit transition
SMB

Federation of small businesses says tech vouchers needed to survive Brexit transition

8 Sep 2020
The IT Pro Podcast: Cyber security post-Brexit
cyber security

The IT Pro Podcast: Cyber security post-Brexit

4 Sep 2020

Most Popular

16 ways to speed up your laptop
Laptops

16 ways to speed up your laptop

16 Sep 2020
16 ways to speed up your laptop
Laptops

16 ways to speed up your laptop

16 Sep 2020
Google removes 17 apps infected with evasive ‘Joker’ malware
malware

Google removes 17 apps infected with evasive ‘Joker’ malware

28 Sep 2020