Opera Sees A Spike In Mobile Web Usage


Number of Opera Mini users up by 11.5 percent in September, as mobile browsing continuse to grow

The mobile internet market continues to expand, with Opera Mini users viewing 500 million web pages on their phones each day, according to Opera’s latest State of the Mobile Web report.

The Opera Mini mobile browser clocked up more than 35.6 million users in September – a month-on-month growth of 11.5 percent. The report claims that those users viewed 15 billion web pages during the month, indicating a 230 percent boost since last year.

The mobile internet market has been growing in popularity since the launch of Apple’s iPhone in 2007, with mobile operators constantly looking at ways to monetise mobile browsing as revenue from voice calls declines. The Opera Mini, designed for low-end phones, saves network bandwidth by compressing data by up to 90 percent. This makes it popular with operators who are struggling with increasingly congested networks.

According to Opera, its compression technology has enabled Opera Mini servers to process up to 2.1 petabytes of data in September. This could potentially save mobile internet consumers more than $8.1 billion per year in the top ten countries for Opera Mini usage.

The top countries are Russia, Indonesia, India, China, Ukraine, South Africa, United States, United Kingdom, Poland and Vietnam. Opera claims that users in the United States and the United Kingdom saved the most money on a monthly basis, due to their usage patterns and the average cost of browsing per MB.

The news follows the recent launch of the Opera Mini 5 beta in September, which Opera CEO Jon von Tetzchner said will make browsing so good on low-end feature phones that users won’t need to go to the iPhone.

Opera overtook the iPhone as the world’s number one mobile browser in May, according to analytics firm StatCounter, holding 24.6 percent of the worldwide market compared to the iPhone’s 22.3 percent.

“We are on a mission to bring the Web to everyone, on their terms,” said von Tetzchner in a statement. “More than half the world’s population has a mobile phone. By making the mobile Web more affordable and available on almost any mobile phone, we help democratise it.”

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