The percentage of global web traffic on mobile phones has been on the rise since before the turn of the decade. In 2018, 52.2 percent of web traffic came from mobile phones, compared to a mere 0.7 percent in 2009.
Since then, growth has come at an incredibly rapid pace. Fast forward just five years later to 2014 and that number rose to 27.1 percent – a 38-fold increase and an average year-on-year growth of 123.7 percent.
This figure has continued growing since then, further rising to 52.5 percent in 2018. That marks a 92.6 percent increase from 2014, essentially nearly doubling the percentage of web traffic on mobile in just four years.
The growth rate from the past few years, however, has been on a decline. More specifically, the 2014 to 2018 year-on-year growth rate was 18.4 percent. Growth also appears to be plateauing, with the 2017 to 2018 year-on-year growth rate at 3.8 percent, just a quarter of the growth rate of the preceding year from 2016 to 2017.
The greatest increase came from 2013 to 2014, which registered an increase in the percentage of web traffic on mobile of 10.9 percent. Coincidentally, 2014 was also the year the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus were launched, the only smartphones on the list of the 10 most sold phones of all time.
The distribution of mobile vs desktop internet usage in the United States reflects a similar pattern, where 58 percent of the total web visits is mobile, as compared to 42 percent on desktop.
Of the mobile internet browsers, Apple’s Safari is proving to be the most popular choice among all mobile internet users in the US. The latest figures show that 51.4 percent of all US mobile users use Safari to browse the internet, with Google Chrome coming in second with 40.7 percent. These mobile browsing states should come as no surprise, given the popularity of iPhones in the US and the pre-installation of Safari in all iPhone devices. As it stands, there are approximately 100 million iPhone users in the US.
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