Mobile internet users in the country is expected to touch 46 million mark by next month of which 35 million will be active mobile internet users (i.e. accessing Internet using their mobile phone at least once a month), according to a joint report by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) and market research firm IMRB.
The number of claimed mobile Internet users has risen to nearly 35 million and the number of active mobile Internet users has also increased to 26.3 million by March 2011. The report also illustrates that mobile internet usage has been witnessing a 15 per cent growth quarter on quarter.
Subho Ray, President â€“ IAMAI said, "The convenience of accessing internet on the move coupled with good tariff plans and connectivity has ensured growth of the segment. Going by the quarter-on-quarter growth, the mobile internet sector will continue to grow at a fast pace."
Lower subscription rentals, availability of feature-rich cell phones at cheaper prices, increased PC and digital Literacy, greater awareness of the Internet medium are some of the reasons why mobile Internet penetration has risen in India, the report said.
E-mail, Chat, Search, Social Networking Sites & Portal are among the most commonly used applications using mobile Internet with Chat a more commonly used application by individuals aged 35 years and above. Prepaid connections continue to be the dominant connection type even in case of active mobile Internet users with around 90 per cent of the active mobile Internet respondents having a prepaid mobile connection.
Other interesting findings emerging from the IAMAI-IMRB report is that the average handset cost for an Internet phone is Rs 6,700, while the average mobile phone bill for an active mobile Internet user is Rs 389. Moreover, as much as 70 per cent of the claimed mobile Internet users (urban India) belong to the top 2 SECs i.e. SEC A and SEC B and around 55 per cent of the claimed mobile Internet users are from the top 8 Metros (Mumbai, Delhi+NCR, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune and Ahmedabad). Additionally, around two thirds of the active mobile Internet users are from the top 8 metros, according to the report.