You hear that rumbling? That’s the sound of mobile internet usage exploding.
Sometime tomorrow, Opera will be releasing a couple of interesting usage statistics for what is one of the (if not the number one) most popular browsers in the world, Opera Mini. They were nice enough to fill us in on the details a bit early, and to give us a green light to share them with you tonight.
For those unfamiliar with the application, Opera Mini is a popular internet browser for mobile phones. Being that it’s written for J2ME, a very widespread Java platform, Opera Mini is compatible with a damn near absurd number of phones. Combining this compatibility with a rather impressive feature set and the fact that Opera Mini is completely free, the application has rocketed in popularity since launching in 2006.
Here are tomorrow’s stats:
- In September of 2008, the Opera Mini client was pushing around 150 million page views per day. In the past year, this number has jumped over over 233 percent, all the way up to 500 million page views per day.
- In September of ’08, their active user count was hovering around 19 million active users; today, they’re at 32 million.
- One of Opera Mini’s driving features is compression; rather than pushing content directly to your handset, it first takes a trip through Opera Mini’s servers where extraneous data is stripped, and content is compressed down to a more mobile-friendly handset. The Opera Mini servers are currently compressing pages by up to 90%, with the average user pulling down just 6 MB of data per month to their handset. This works out to faster page loads — and for some people, less money spent. By Opera’s count, they’re saving users on pay-as-you-go data plans (who can pay up to $1 per MB) an average of $54 per month in data usage fees.
One thing that’s interesting to note here: the number of pages served is not proportional to the growth in active users. While the active user count has ticked up by around 68%, the number of pages served has rocketed upward by 233%; in other words, people are viewing significantly more pages on their handsets than ever before. There’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that mobile internet usage is growing rapidly, but it’s incredible to see by how much.