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

Managing security risk and compliance in a challenging landscape

How key technology partners grow with your organisation

Download now

Evaluate your order-to-cash process

15 recommended metrics to benchmark your O2C operations

Download now

AI 360: Hold, fold, or double down?

How AI can benefit your business

Download now

Getting started with Azure Red Hat OpenShift

A developer’s guide to improving application building and deployment capabilities

Download now

Recommended

Verizon and Unity partner on 5G and mobile edge computing
5G

Verizon and Unity partner on 5G and mobile edge computing

19 Jan 2021
How to share a Wi-Fi connection securely
wifi & hotspots

How to share a Wi-Fi connection securely

5 Jan 2021
Border force reliant on 26-year-old tech due to digital upgrade delay
digital transformation

Border force reliant on 26-year-old tech due to digital upgrade delay

9 Dec 2020
SpaceX wins $885.5m to connect rural America
broadband

SpaceX wins $885.5m to connect rural America

8 Dec 2020

Most Popular

School laptops sent by government arrive loaded with malware
malware

School laptops sent by government arrive loaded with malware

21 Jan 2021
How to move Windows 10 from your old hard drive to SSD
operating systems

How to move Windows 10 from your old hard drive to SSD

21 Jan 2021
What is the Raspberry Pi Pico?
Hardware

What is the Raspberry Pi Pico?

21 Jan 2021