Internet trends in 2013: Mobile internet traffic continues to grow

Mary Meeker, a renowned venture capitalist and an early backer of the internet recently recognized the major internet trends of 2012 in her yearly internet report which is considered an industry standard and great document from which to predict future online trends.

A study of the report makes clear the trends which we can look forward to in 2013. The rising prominence of mobile devices as platforms from which the internet is accessed seems to be particularly significant.

Internet access continues to expand

There are now more than 2.4 billion internet users with a growth of 8% per year. The majority of this growth occurs in emerging markets, as 78% of Americans already have access to the internet.

Mobile devices are increasingly used to access the internet

A major area in which growth is expected in 2013 is across the use of mobile devices as users accessing the net via smartphone and tablet grows with 37% as the uptake of the Apple iPad shatters the records of previously launched Apple products, the iPod and iPhone. In light of the manner in which the iPod changed the media industry and the popularity of the iPhone, the comparison between these two products and Apple’s tablet is particularly momentous. The iPad has been adopted at three times the rate of the iPhone.

Continued growth in the use of smartphones to access the internet

The adoption of Android phones has also been particularly noteworthy as the Android is being adopted at six times the rate in which the iPhone was. The adoption of smartphones like iPhones and Android devices is unlikely to abate soon as despite the great rate at which they are being adopted there is still great room for growth with only one billion of the 5 billion cell phone user’s worldwide currently using smartphones.

Continued growth in the use of tablets to access the internet

The growth in the use of e-readers or tablets seems similarly unlimited. Two years ago only 2% of adults in the USA owned tablet devices. This figure is now at 29% with the use of tablets spreading to younger users with 48% of 6-12 year olds reportedly asking for iPad’s for Christmas, while 36% wanted iPad minis.

Worldwide 13% of internet traffic is from mobile devices – in India, internet traffic from mobile devices surpassed desktop traffic in May 2012. Internet usage in other countries is expected to follow suit with mobile traffic set to become the majority.

Mobile devices are increasingly used for internet shopping

On Black Friday – the traditional day of mass sales in the US – internet shoppers broke numerous records as internet sales exceeded $1 billion for the first time in history. An estimated 24% of sales made via the internet on Black Friday are thought to have been via traffic from mobile devices.

Are you using you smartphone or tablet to browse the internet and shop online?