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Government statistics show mobile web on the move

By Tim Fuell - September 2, 2011

Wave after wave of reports indicate to us that the UK population are using their mobile phone to access the web an every increasing amount. Now however official government figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) prove it too.

Nearly half (45 per cent) of Internet users accessed the Internet via a mobile phone in 2011, according to new data released by ONS this week, and the figures keep rising. That figure is already up from 31 per cent last year and 23 per cent in 2009.  Younger users are leading tha push with 71 per cent of 16-24 year old Internet users having accessed the internet via a mobile.

Despite some mobile providers clamping down on mobile data usage, the availability of public WiFi means more and more data is being used on the move. The report estimates 4.9 million people (13% of internet users) conncected via WiFi hotspots this year, double on the previous year.

Don’t believe the reports of social media losing its appeal either. The report shows 57 per cent of adult Internet users used online social networks in 2011, up from 43 per cent in 2010. Again the 16-24 age group dominates the sector with 91 per cent of 16-24 year old Internet users now using social networking sites.

Yet there does appear to be a digital divide. 77 per cent of households report having access to the Internet, up from 73 per cent last year, with 93 per cent of these accessing via a broadband connection. Interestingly, half of those without a household Internet connection said they didn’t have one because they ‘don’t need the Internet’.

Other government dats shows that in the second quarter of 2011, 8.73 million UK adults had never used the Internet. That is down 12,000 people since quarter one with the over 75s least likely to have been online. Interestingly, over one-third of disabled people (36.8 per cent) also say they have never been online.

Are you accessing more than before? How do you most often access the web?