Mobile web page browsing has doubled

The number of pages viewed on the mobile web in the UK has doubled since January 2008, according to research.

And Google is the top ranked site visited, with Facebook now overtaking Yahoo to take the number two spot in UK users' hearts.

The results come from the Opera State of the Mobile Web report, which looked at sites and phones used for the Opera Mini browser in Europe and the US.

Nokia dominated the handsets preferred by Opera Mini users. The Nokia 6300 and the Nokia 6500 were the top two handsets, followed by the Samsung SGH-G600 and the Nokia N95 in fourth spot, the top smartphone in the poll.

Opera said that the clear trend was that the mobile web was growing around the world, even in areas where broadband and PC penetration was high, such as the UK, Europe, and the US.

"It is growing because consumers are used to having ubiquitous access to the web and expect to have it whenever they are," said Jon Tetzchner, the company's chief executive.

However the report also highlighted other areas like Africa, Latin America and Southeast Asia, where the mobile phone was essential for viewing pages on the web, and broadband penetration was sometimes lower.

"The real promise of the mobile web is in connecting those who do tot have broadband readily available," said Tetzchner.

He predicted: "The next billion people will use the web first on their mobile phones. Once that happens we will finally both unleash the vast potential and realise the greatest benefit of the mobile web."