Smartphones made up only 12% of device sales worldwide in 2008, but accounted for 35% of mobile ad impressions in April 2009, according to AdMob's latest mobile metrics report.
Using phone sales data from Gartner, the study also showed that while the iPhone accounted for only 8% of the smartphone market, it generated 43% of mobile ad impressions in April. (Ads served into iPhone applications made up a significant portion of overall impressions.)
By contrast, Symbian-powered phones, which boast a 52% share of handset sales, generated only 36% of mobile impressions during the quarter.
Apple devices accounted for 26.2% of worldwide ad impressions, edging out Nokia phones with 25.9%. In the U.S., Apple generated 34.7% of impressions, followed by Samsung at 18.6%. Apple also drove 43% of mobile Web traffic on smartphones globally and 50% in the U.S.
The AdMob study found that the iPhone was responsible for 65% of HTML Web traffic among smartphones, while Google's Android-powered device -- representing just 1% of smartphones -- claimed 9% of HTML usage. Symbian phones accounted for only 7% of vists to HTML sites. "Right now, it's clear that usage of mobile Web sites, applications and HTML sites is growing. But just because iPhone and Android overindex more today, it does not mean HTML sites will rule," stated the AdMob blog in a Tuesday post on the April metrics report.
"We think that regardless of where the big players place their bets, it will be the consumer that decides what gives them the best Internet experience on their mobile device and that will be what they use."