Commentary

Mobile Now Main Channel For Web Access

Worldwide, more people now rely on mobile gadgets than desktop computers to browse the Web, new research shows. Occurring at some point in October, the shift marks a major milestone in the way we communicate, consume and share information.   

By the end of last month, mobile and tablet devices accounted for 51.3% of Web usage compared to 48.7% by desktop, according to a new report from StatCounter. Remarkably, the landmark moment comes at a time when many businesses have yet to make the necessary mobile modifications, according to Aodhan Cullen, CEO of the analytics firm.

“This should be a wake-up call … especially for small businesses, sole traders and professionals to make sure that their websites are mobile friendly,” Cullen notes in the report.

In the United States and the United Kingdom, mobile has yet to overtake desktop computing -- but the shift is coming. In the U.S., desktop computing still accounts for 58% of Web usage, while smartphones and tablets account for 42% of Web usage. In the U.K., the distribution is 55.6% to 44.4%.

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Of course, many American and British businesses have to factor international trends into their models.

For example, “Post-Brexit, U.K. 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,” Cullen warns.

This column was previously published in Moblog on November 2, 2016.

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