Of over 100 attendees surveyed, 90 percent indicated that that they have increased their mobile Internet usage in the last year with 92 percent of respondents still citing email as the most popular service, followed by Internet browsing (80 percent) and news services (67 percent). Of the minority that indicated their mobile Internet usage has not increased, one third reported discoverability and navigation to be the key barriers to adoption.
“One look at the news from Mobile World Congress shows that the industry is focused on the delivery of mobile Internet services and applications,” said Michel Quazza, chief executive officer, SurfKitchen. “While our survey is only based on a relatively small sample, it is notable that traditional access models are still used by the majority of consumers to access mobile Internet and data services. We expect this to significantly change over the coming months with mainstream adoption of new mobile Internet platforms and application stores. As a result, we will not only see a much greater increase in mobile Internet usage, but also in the variety of services and applications used by consumers regardless of their mobile device.”
The potential of mobile applications stores has been a focus of the show in Barcelona and respondents of the survey who already use applications and widgets to access mobile Internet services reported speed, ease-of-use and choice as the core benefits over traditional access methods of WAP and mobile Internet browsers.
The survey results echo a recent Informa Telecoms & Media report that predicted that annual data services will more than double from USD 148 billion in 2007 to USD 347 billion in 2013.* The barriers identified by MWC attendees also matched recent industry research by Forrester Research that found that discoverability and usability are still presenting challenges to the industry.**
*“Informa Telecoms & Media: Annual mobile revenues to hit USD1 trillion by 2013 as global subs top 5 billion,”
**“Forrester Research: Usability And cost Slow Mobile Internet Adoption,” July 9th, 2008