Opera mobile web use sees large UK growth


Opera, has released new figures that show mobile web use in the UK grew by 63 per cent last year.

Opera tracks web pages viewed via its Java based Mini web browser. In its State of the Mobile Webreport for January 2009, the company said that the browser had 20 million unique users, which represented an increase of 12.1 per cent over the previous year, viewing an average of 245 pages.

This meant that 122 million MB of data was transferred via the browser, though this traffic is compressed by 90 per cent by Opera's servers. Uncompressed, it would represent more than one petabyte of data - the first time that Opera has reached that watermark figure.

The report highlights the importance of the mobile web for countries with less established networking infrastructure, such as Armenia, Nigeria and Egypt, which all showed huge growth in Opera Mini usage. Armenia grew by some 2,809 per cent, giving it the highest percentage of page views per users, with 669 pages. Nigeria use grew by 1,854 per cent and Egypt by 1,391 per cent.

"Looking back on a full year of mobile web growth, it is easy to see why mobile devices will become the primary device for web usage in most of the world," said Jon von Tetzchner, Opera's chief executive.

"Developing countries may lead the way due to the sheer prevalence of mobile devices versus PCs, but the solid growth rates in developed countries such as the US, the UK and Germany, show that the entire world is moving in this direction."

At the recent Mobile World Congress event, Opera announced its Opera Turbo' technology, which it says will compress data for all its browsers by up to 80 per cent and draws on compression experience it has gained from Opera Mini.

Benny Har-Even

Benny Har-Even is a twenty-year stalwart of technology journalism who is passionate about all areas of the industry, but telecoms and mobile and home entertainment are among his chief interests. He has written for many of the leading tech publications in the UK, such as PC Pro and Wired, and previously held the position of technology editor at ITPro before regularly contributing as a freelancer.

Known affectionately as a ‘geek’ to his friends, his passion has seen him land opportunities to speak about technology on BBC television broadcasts, as well as a number of speaking engagements at industry events.