Mobile share of web traffic in Asia has tripled since 2010


In just over two years, the share of web traffic in Asia that comes from mobile devices has almost tripled. In fact, in some countries, close to half of all web traffic comes from mobile devices. India is very close to mobile traffic breaking 50% of all web traffic, and several other countries have already passed that benchmark.

Note (2012-05-10 3:39pm CET): We have amended the top 10 list below to reflect the most recent figures.

The world is changing, and it’s changing fast

If you look at the top countries in the world ranked by number of mobile phones, there’s little surprise that China is the number one, followed by India, United States, Brazil, and Indonesia.

But if we look at the percentage of users that go online with a mobile device compared to with a computer, the list changes.

In late 2010, we investigated what part of all web usage across the world was mobile, and we’ve done so again with the latest figures available. This is what it looks like right now:

Mobile versus desktop web traffic

Comparing the figures from 2010 to the current ones reveals a dramatic increase in just over two years:

Mobile share of web traffic
2010 2012 Increase 2010-2012
Africa 5.81% 14.85% 155.59%
Asia 6.1% 17.84% 192.46%
Europe 1.81% 5.13% 183.43%
North America 4.71% 7.96% 69.00%
Oceania 2.88% 7.55% 162.15%
South America 1.46% 2.86% 95.89%
Worldwide 3.81% 10.01% 162.73%

We should point out that these numbers are percentages out of the total of web traffic and do not reflect any change in the absolute number of people or devices.

But by all accounts, mobile web traffic counted in absolute numbers is virtually exploding in the next few years.

Countries with largest mobile share of web traffic

When we dig a little deeper into this information, we find that, in several countries, mobile web traffic has already overtaken web traffic from computers.

Right now, the countries with the highest share of mobile traffic as part of total web traffic are (you can see the list that we’re basing this on here):

  • 58.06% – Zimbabwe
  • 57.89% – Nigeria
  • 48.24% – India
  • 45.32% – Sudan
  • 44.24% – Zambia
  • 42.77% – Uzbekistan
  • 35.66% – Laos
  • 35.48% – Malawi
  • 34.05% – Brunei
  • 27.68% – Libya

As you can see, Africa and Asia split the list between them. Africa amassed six countries, which left Asia with four. Over at The Next Web, Jon Russell recently predicted that mobile web traffic in India will overtake PC web traffic this year, which seems pretty likely to happen. That’s significant enough in and of itself due to the large population in India.

The first European country is the United Kingdom with 10.71%, and the U.S. showed 8.61% mobile web traffic as share of all web traffic.

It’s worth noting that Europe scored a 183.43% increase in mobile browsing share over this period, not that far behind Asia. But with the mobile share only increasing from 1.81% to 5.13%, Europe is still far behind both Africa and Asia when it comes to the percentage of users accessing the web using mobiles.

The trend is set to continue

Worldwide, mobiles only account for about 10% of web access, but it’s a figure that is growing fast. With some countries already passed 50% of web traffic coming from mobiles – with Zimbabwe in the lead – it’s safe to assume this development will only continue.

Clearly, people are taking to their mobile devices all over the world to get on the Internet, but more so in Africa and Asia than elsewhere.

This is a very interesting development to follow, and we’re sure to report on it in future articles.

Note about the data: We used data from StatCounter as the basis for our analysis. The data for 2012 covers the first seven days of May, 2012.

Hi-res graphics: The illustration above is available in a hi-res version.

Top picture: J. Henning Buchholz /


  1. Surprised by the Oceania figure – thought it would be higher. Here in Australia the growth of iPads and tablets is astounding. I think that per capita Aussies buy iPads at a the highest rate in the world. Would be interested to see consumer only mobile stats (as distinct from Business, desktop bound figures) as I think that the mobile figure for consumers in Australia would be closer to 20-25%

    1.  @amvandenhurk You can look at for the latest numbers.

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