Great Mobile Web Statistics from AdMob

 AdMob Logo Finding data on mobile web traffic and mobile browser share is like pulling teeth. It got a little easier this week with AdMob’s release of their Mobile Metrics Report (PDF). It’s an analysis of data on mobile ad impressions for the month of September. AdMob will be publishing the report monthly. There’s loads of some solid information in this report; things like the most popular phones for mobile browsing worldwide and in the US, India, South Africa and the UK and the percentage of phones support things like streaming video or WAP push. A big thank you to AdMob for making this data for free.

Almost 43% of AdMob’s traffic comes from the US. That’s much higher than I expected. Clearly there’s a big growth opportunity for AdMob in the global market. It also means that the data, especially the “Worldwide” numbers have a strong US bias.

AdMob’s data mostly confirm what I’ve claiming for some time; that most mobile browsing is done with mainstream phones. I keep hearing the argument that users interested in mobile browsing will gravitate toward the best devices for browsing, high end smartphones with full web browsers. The Admob data shows a different picture, with a Motorola RAZR being the phone that generates the most mobile web impressions in the US and worldwide. The reason is simple, the RAZR was the top selling phone until recently. People are really taking to surfing the mobile web and they are doing it with whatever phones they have.

I was surprised though by BlackBerry‘s showing with three devices in the US top 10 compared with only one Windows Mobile phone. I don’t consider either the BlackBerry browser or Mobile Internet Explorer particularly advanced as they have limited CSS and JavaScript support but they do have large screens and can handle big pages.

I’ve added the screen resolution of each phone to the Admob tables. Mobile web designers take note, the median screen size reported by AdMob is 176×220 and phones with 128px wide screens still drive a significant amount of traffic.

World – Mobile Web Browser Share – September 2007

Phone Technology Resolution Share
RAZR V3 GPRS 176×220 4.0%
Motorola KRZRK1c EVDO 176×220 2.7%
BlackBerry 8700 Edge 320×240 2.4%
BlackBerry 8100 (Pearl) Edge 240×260 2.2%
Nokia N70 UMTS 176×208 2.2%
Nokia 6600 GPRS 176×208 1.6%
Nokia 6030 GPRS 128×128 1.3%
Samsung A900 EVDO 240×320 1.2%
BlackBerry 8830 EVDO/GPRS 320×240 1.2%
Samsung I607 BlackJack HSDPA 320×240 1.2%
Total     19.9%

US – Mobile Web Browser Share – September 2007

Phone Technology Resolution Share
Motorola RAZR V3 GPRS 176×220 7.1%
Motorola KRZR K1c EVDO 176×220 6.3%
BlackBerry 8700 Edge 320×240 5.5%
BlackBerry 8100 (Pearl) Edge 240×260 4.3%
Samsung I607 BlackJack HSDPA 320×240 2.7%
Samsung A900 EVDO 240×320 2.7%
BlackBerry 8830 EVDO/GPRS 320×240 2.6%
Sanyo SCP6600 (Katana) 1xRTT 240×320 2.4%
Danger SidekickII GPRS 240×160 1.8%
LG LX55 Fusic EVDO 176×220 1.7%
Total     37.2%

India – Mobile Web Browser Share – September 2007

Phone Technology Resolution Share
Nokia 6030 GPRS 128×128 5.9%
Nokia 6600 GPRS 176×208 5.9%
Nokia 6670 (Opera) GPRS 176×208 5.4%
Nokia N70 UMTS 176×208 4.6%
Nokia N72 Edge 176×208 3.3%
Nokia 3230 Edge 176×208 3.0%
Nokia 6630 UMTS 176×208 3.0%
Nokia 7610 GPRS 176×208 2.9%
Nokia 6233 UMTS 240×320 2.5%
Nokia N73 UMTS 240×320 2.4%
Total     38.9%

South Africa – Mobile Web Browser Share – September 2007

Phone Technology Resolution Share
Motorola V360 Edge 176×220 12.1%
Samsung E250 Edge 128×160 6.5%
Nokia N70 UMTS 176×208 4.0%
Samsung E370 Edge 128×160 3.3%
Samsung D500 GPRS 128×160 2.4%
Nokia 6111 Edge 128×160 1.9%
Nokia 6230i Edge 208×208 1.9%
SonyEricsson W810i Edge 176×220 1.8%
Motorola C261 GPRS 128×160 1.7%
Samsung D900 Edge 240×320 1.7%
Total     37.3%

UK- Mobile Web Browser Share – September 2007

Phone Technology Resolution Share
Sony Ericsson K800i 240×320 UMTS 5.7%
ZTE F866 176×220 UMTS 3.9%
Sony Ericsson K610i 176×220 UMTS 3.8%
SonyEricsson W850i 240×320 UMTS 3.5%
SonyEricsson W810i 176×220 Edge 3.1%
Nokia N73 176×220 UMTS 2.6%
Nokia 6280 240×320 UMTS 2.3%
NEC e616 176×220 UMTS 2.3%
Nokia 6630 176×208 UMTS 2.1%
Nokia 6680 17sx208 UMTS 2.0%
Total     31.2%

The one thing that jumps out at me in this report is how some countries like Israel and especially South Africa are generating traffic out of all proportion to their size. I’ve taken the AdMob data and added a column listing impressions per capita and sorted the table on that. The most impressions per man, woman and child were from Israel at 3.14. But South Africa is tied with the US for second at 2.24. Serbia and Romania were next, ahead of the UK and Canada. This is all the more surprising considering the much lower per capita income (last column) in South Africa, Serbia and Romania than in the other countries.
I don’t know what to make of this. I suspect data rates may be part of the answer but I couldn’t find any evidence of cheap flat rate data in South Africa. It could also just mean that AdMob has done a better job of selling to advertisers and publishers in these countries

Country Impressions (Millions) Population (Millions) Impressions / Capita Income / Capita
Israel 22 7 3.14 $31K
South Africa 110 49 2.24 $13K
United States 673 300 2.24 $43K
Serbia & Montenegro 21 10 2.10 $6K
Romania 30 21 1.43 $10K
United Kingdom 86 61 1.41 $35K
Canada 26 33 0.79 $36K
Indonesia 63 232 0.27 $4K
Bangladesh 24 159 0.15 $2K
India 160 1169 0.14 $4K

I’m looking forward to seeing these reports every month. They will be great for trend tracking. I’m hoping that AdMob offers even more data on future reports. It’s probably asking too much but I’d love to have a list of the top 100 handsets in each market rather than just the top 10. Especially if the data came in xml or even csv format for easy slicing and dicing.

10 thoughts on “Great Mobile Web Statistics from AdMob

  1. @GT,

    My own mobile sites are two small to be statistically signifigant. However, there is lots of data out there if you do a search. Here are a few sources to get you started:

    AdMob’s traffic more than tripled in 2008 (PDF) – http://www.admob.com/marketing/pdf/mobile_metrics_sep_08.pdf

    Opera reported a 463% growth in Opera Mini data volume this year. – http://www.opera.com/press/releases/2008/12/22/

    Nielsen Online Reveals Mobile Internet Growth 8X Greater than PC-Based Internet Growth (PDF) – http://www.nielsen-online.com/pr/pr_081124_uk.pdf

    I bookmark everything I find regarding mobile web statistics on Delicious.com – http://delicious.com/wapreview/statistics

  2. I am trying to find some data on how much mobile browsing has increased in 2008 vs. 2007 etc. I don’t suppose you have that type of data hey? If so can you blog it or email it to me?

  3. @werutzb

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  5. Quite an interesting read
    What I found interesting: The top 4 phones make up less than 12% of market share, and none of them are from the market leader. Also these 4 seem like the kind of models that show mobile web browsing is still a secondary consideration in buying a mobile phone. I think the Razrs are popular because of the form factor and not the browser, and Blackberries are email machines with web browsing added in.

    Nice blog

    Susan Jaye
    http://www.gppositionsaustralia.com/

  6. I think I can help you out with your confusion about the unusually high page views, particularly for South Africa…you’re forgetting for a moment that in this country and in many developing countries people don’t have personal computers at all and thus their mobile phone is the first device they’ve ever had that allows them to browse the web…any web…period.

    I’m certain that if this situation were similar in the US you’d see similarly high page views on mobile relative to other countries where PCs were more prevalent.

    Oliver Starr
    http://us.blognation.com

  7. I live in South Africa and can tell you that we have among the highest data rates in the world. ADSL costs roughly 2 to 3 time what it costs in the US/UK and cell phone data packages can range from about that level (for a high end but limited package) to about 2 times higher than ADSL (for example a prepaid open ended package).

    My company develops software for mobile content providers and hosts a number of customers on our platform. Depending on the offering and where/how it is marketed, the clientèle can range from pretty savvey young people to unsophisticated people experiencing “this thing called the internet” for the first time in their lives – on a mobile phone! Our call centre has mushroomed (we provide that as part of the service for hosted solutions) due to having to deal the number of people who don’t even know what a URL is, let alone understand the cost implications of rich multi-media content on the phone.

    The above preamble is important so that you can appreciate that the majority of South African’s accessing WAP sites are probably lower middle class or emerging middle class people on prepaid data packages… i.e. they are paying as much as 4 to 6 times what the average American or British would be paying per MByte of data. Of course purchasing price parity narrows that down a bit (in dollar terms) but not by much.

  8. Interesting stuff. The choice of countries seems a bit odd, though. Why Romania, for example and not France, Germany or Finland? I did not see this choice explained in the document.

    What I found interesting: The top 4 phones make up less than 12% of market share, and none of them are from the market leader. Also these 4 seem like the kind of models that show mobile web browsing is still a secondary consideration in buying a mobile phone. I think the Razrs are popular because of the form factor and not the browser, and Blackberries are email machines with web browsing added in.

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