The rise of India’s mobile web


India’ broadband subscriptions pale in comparison to India’s mobile phone subscriptions. With 700 million mobile subscribers, India’s 10 million broadband subscribers can be ignored. Maybe it is meant to be that way. India already has 210 million mobile subscribers who access the Internet through their phones. To bolster India’s mobile web ambitions and growth, Opera has released a state of the mobile web report for September 2010. And you have to see the results to believe them.

Mobile web growth in India

  • Page-view growth since September 2009: 381.6 %
  • Unique-user growth since September 2009: 306.3 %
  • Data transfer growth since September 2009: 330.1 %
  • Page views per user: 402
  • Data transferred per user (MB): 7
  • Data transferred per page view (KB): 18

Top 10 sites in India (Unique users)

  7. (8)
  8. (7)

Top handsets for September 2010 :

  1. Nokia 5130 XpressMusic
  2. Nokia 2700c
  3. Nokia 2690
  4. Nokia 2730c
  5. Nokia 3110c
  6. Nokia 7210c
  7. Nokia N70
  8. Nokia 6300
  9. Nokia 5233
  10. Nokia N73 (Source)

A 380 percent increase in the page views since September 2009 and a 300 percent unique user increase, and these are the page views recorded by Opera’s mobile browser only. There are other users and there are other page views from other browsers, which when added to this would paint a very rosy picture for India mobile web. This study itself would justify all the spending on the 3G spectrum by India’s telecom companies.

Nokia, which is continuing to lose market share to Indian companies like Micromax and Spice, dominates the stats. The top 10 mobile handsets used to access Opera are  all from Nokia. This might not reflect the true picture as there is a possibility of non-availability of other browsers for these Nokia devices. Happy reading for Nokia nevertheless. And there’s more cheer for Nokia. As per a different report from Experian Hitwise, Nokia holds a 40 percent share in mobile phone-related searches for the 12 weeks ending October 2, 2010.

In many Asian countries and the BRIC countries iPhone doesn’t figure in the top 10 list. Nokia and Samsung rule in the BRIC countries with an exception of iPhone occupying sixth place in Brazil. Nokia is the top brand in almost all Asian countries. The European Union (EU) adores iPhone, which is the top handset in  seven EU countries. iPhone continues to be a top phone in the US.

The state of mobile web for 2011 would be an interesting read. With the impending 3G launch, the page views will increase many fold. The top 10 handset share to access Opera could see a sea change to. Nokia could still occupy a prominent place but there will be new entrants from Micromax, Spice, Samsung and Videocon. All thanks to Android. And iPhone will not figure in the top 10 list for 2011.

[VIA, Image from Flickr user Cory M Greiner]