In recent months, Google has seen an acceleration of activity among mobile phone users. The company said this is evidence that the era of mobile Internet is at hand. Google has seen sharp increases in mobile Internet usage spurred by services Google has offered on BlackBerry, Nokia and iPhone devices.
“We have very much hit a watershed moment in terms of mobile Internet usage,” Matt Waddell, a product manager for Google Mobile, said in an interview. “We are seeing that mobile Internet use is in fact accelerating.
Waddell believes the availability of flat-rate data plans from carriers encourages consumers to connect with the Internet over their phones. The per-minute charges of the past discouraged mobile Web browsing. Waddell also remarked that improved Web browsers and better designed services from companies like Google are fueling growth.
Recent Google software has allowed mobile users to increase Web search speeds by up to 40%. The software shortcuts the time it takes for people to perform Web searches of Google by eliminating initial search steps of finding a Web browser on the phone, opening the browser, waiting for network access and getting to Google.com. The company said the increased convenience has increased the number of searches.
“We are actually seeing a 20 percent increase in the number of searches by people,” Waddell said.
“Faster is better than slow, especially on a mobile device, where fast is much better than slow,” Waddell said. “Not only are we are seeing increased user satisfaction but also greater usage.”
Users of phones based on software from Research in Motion, Nokia’s Symbian-based phones and now Microsoft Windows Mobile can download the software at http://mobile.google.com/.