One in Four UK Consumers on the Mobile Web Daily

Almost one in four British consumers (23 per cent) are now using the mobile internet every day, up from 13 per cent a year ago, according to the 2011 Mobile Internet Attitudes report from Antenna Software.

The growth has been driven in part by a demand for staying in touch with friends through Instant Messaging (21 per cent in the UK and 22 per cent in the US) and social networking (27 per cent in both countries). However, barriers to further adoption exist with poor user experience holding most consumers back. According to the report, more than one in three (39 per cent) British and 44 per cent of American consumers, who can access the mobile internet on their device, never use the service.

Antenna, which acquired Volantis, a mobile internet specialist, in February 2011 commissioned YouGov to poll the views of a representative sample of 2,296 consumers, aged 18+ in the UK, and 2,079 in the US.

With one in five US consumers (20 per cent) now using the mobile internet every day (up from 17 per cent in 2010), British consumers have taken the lead and are more active on the mobile internet than their transatlantic counterparts. One in three British (34 per cent) and US (33 per cent) consumers are now accessing the internet using their mobile phone at least once per week, up from 27 and 28 per cent respectively in 2010.

“The mobile internet has become an important part of daily life for consumers on both sides of the Atlantic,” says Antenna president and CEO, Jim Hemmer. “The desire for convenience and developments in technology mean that today, more people than ever can enjoy good mobile internet experiences, regardless of their handset. But clearly our 2011 Mobile Internet Attitudes Report has found that there is still some way to go for operators and enterprises to ensure that consumers are getting a compelling and consistent experience of the brand.”

Almost one in two UK consumers (48 per cent) with mobile internet access would be more likely to use mobile web browsing if the experience was more like that offered by the internet on their PC. With comparable speed, functionality and appearance of web sites, the 2011 Mobile Internet Attitudes Report has found that there is an opportunity for operators and enterprises to improve the mobile web experience. For companies looking to grow mCommerce opportunities in 2011 and beyond, the results show that having a mobile internet experience that is comparable with that on a PC will drive one in two ABC1 consumers to use it.

According to the 2011 Mobile Internet Attitudes report, 27 per cent of consumers in both countries that can access the internet on their mobile phone are still put off using the mobile internet by websites that don’t display or function properly on their mobile screens. 32 per cent of British and 28 per cent of US consumers have specifically been put off doing so due to difficulty in navigating mobile internet sites.

“Operators and enterprises must continue to do more to make compelling mobile internet and application experiences available to consumers on all mobile devices, not just smartphones,” says Hemmer. “Consumers expect a high standard of internet experience, whether on PC or mobile, and while most mobile devices in widespread use in the UK and the US are capable of providing high quality mobile internet experiences, operators and enterprises must ensure their mobile internet websites and applications can be rendered optimally across the broadest range of handsets. Otherwise, they risk losing out on critical future revenue opportunities.”

Despite the promotion of flat rate data packages, cost also remains a barrier to greater mobile internet usage. 39 per cent of British, and one in three American consumers, still believe that using their mobile phone to access the internet is too expensive.