More and more Internet traffic continues to be funneled through mobile devices.
New data from StatCounter shows that in August 2013 mobile devices accounted for 18% of global Internet traffic. That’s up from just under 12% a year ago.
In late 2008, mobile’s share was under 1%.
And mobile Internet traffic is growing at a faster rate than it ever has (it grew faster in the last 12 months than it did between August 2011 and 2012).
Even as mobile device uptake shows signs of exhaustion in the developed world, mobile’s ceiling is far from being reached in many other regions like South America, Africa, and underdeveloped parts of Asia.
If device makers and prominent mobile Web companies properly target users in these areas, we could see mobile Internet traffic explode further. In emerging markets, smartphones will become people’s main gateway to the Internet.
Mark Zuckerberg recently laid out a plan to connect the approximately two-thirds of the world population without Internet access. He also is hoping to offer free or low-cost Facebook services to mobile subscribers across emerging markets.
Though Zuckerberg’s plans are rooted in grabbing Facebook’s next billion or five billion users, the benefits could permeate the mobile landscape. If billions of new Internet users get hooked on their Facebook apps, that translates to more data revenue for carriers and fresh demand for handsets.