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Wi-Fi Access Accounts for a Quarter of Smartphone Internet Traffic

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Note -- this news article is more than a year old.

Mobile advertising agency, AdMob has examined the rise of smartphones, the global growth of the iPhone, and the immediate impact of new Android devices in its November 2009 AdMob Mobile Metrics Report.

The report highlights that one of the major trends in 2009 has been the growing share of requests from smartphones and increasing usage of Wi-Fi. In November 2009 in the US, smartphones accounted for 48 percent of mobile Web and application requests, up from 31 percent in November 2008.

Wi-Fi usage has also taken off, with 24 percent of requests in the US coming in over a WiFi network in November 2009, compared to 8 percent in November 2008. A new class of devices that are not phones, but with the ability to connect to the Internet over WiFi, such as the iPod touch, Sony PlayStation Portable (PSP), and Nintendo DSi gained traction in 2009.

The report also examines growth in unique iPhone and iPod touch users since January 2009, finding more rapid growth outside of the US. In November 2009, 50 percent of unique users were located outside of the US, an increase from 39 percent in January 2009. Of its top markets, Apple devices experienced the strongest percentage growth in Japan, France, and Australia in 2009.

The launch of new Android devices in the second half of 2009 has accelerated the growth of the platform. Six months ago a single Android device, the HTC Dream (G1), generated 92 percent of Android traffic, while in November 2009 the same device accounted for only 37 percent of requests. The Motorola Droid, HTC Magic, and HTC Hero generated 22 percent, 21 percent and nine percent of Android requests worldwide in November 2009, respectively.

Highlights from the November 2009 AdMob Mobile Metrics Report include:

  • 55 percent of ad requests in the US came from devices with WiFi capability, up from only 19 percent a year earlier.
  • The Top 5 US devices based on WiFi requests generated were the iPod touch, iPhone, Sony PSP, HTC Dream (G1), and Motorola Droid.
  • 36 percent of iPhone traffic in the US was over WiFi, considerably higher than other WiFi capable devices. Less than 10 percent of traffic from the major Android devices came over WiFi.
  • The iPhone accounted for 71 percent and the iPod touch accounted for 29 percent of total unique users from Apple devices.
  • Android generated 27 percent of the requests from smartphones in the US in November 2009, up from 20 percent in October 2009.
  • 88 percent of requests from Android devices came from the US in November 2009, the second largest Android market is the UK with four percent of requests.

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