Last Updated: October 2, 2021
When mobile phones first launched, all we could do with them was talk and text.
And then the mobile web came along—and changed the way we use our mobile devices forever.
As recent mobile internet usage stats show, we now use mobiles for a plethora of other activities as well.
Yes, the latest data is clear – we are all going mobile at a good pace. Let’s look at some more:
Handy Mobile Internet Usage Stats
- US adults spend more than 5 hours on mobile phones daily.
- Mobile e-commerce sales will hit $3.56 trillion by the end of 2021.
- Mobile phones generate 52% of the total internet traffic.
- About 3 in 5 users check their emails on the go.
- The average mobile user spends a total of 2 hours every day on YouTube and social media.
- 35% of US consumers do all their online shopping through their mobiles.
- American mobile users spend only 21 minutes on phone calls a day on average.
These statistics prove people tend to do lots of things on the go, whether it’s browsing the internet, doing social networking, or shopping online.
Have a look at the most recent usage statistics for smartphones to find out more about how people are using their mobile devices in 2021.
Stats for Mobile Internet Usage in 2021
There was a time when internet access was via desktop alone.
Well, things are different in 2021.
Read on to see our research on mobile internet usage and how mobile phones are influencing the internet landscape.
1. There are 3.8 billion smartphone users on the globe in 2021.
(Source: Bank My Cell)
Smartphone ownership has increased from 2.5 billion in 2016 to nearly 4 billion in 2021. And it doesn’t show any signs of slowing down.
So mobile internet usage in 2021 must’ve also increased, right?
Wait till you hear about e-commerce!
2. Mobile e-commerce sales will hit $3.56 trillion by the end of 2021.
Are you an e-commerce store owner?
Here’s something you’d be happy to know:
According to mobile internet usage statistics, total e-commerce sales will grow by $650 billion by the end of the year. That’s a 2.5% increase compared to $2.91 trillion in 2020. That’s to be expected, considering 72.9% of all US retail e-commerce is m-commerce.
Therefore, if you haven’t optimized your website for mobile usage, now’s the time. The upward curve is likely to keep increasing in the coming years.
3. 72.6% of smartphone owners will use their devices to access the internet by 2025.
As of 2019, only 2 billion people were using their smartphones to access the Web.
The figure is likely to change in the next 5 years. It is predicted that by then, 3.7 billion people will prefer using their mobile devices to access the internet. And that’s also confirmed by the latest mobile vs desktop statistics. The desktop king is dead. Long live the mobile king!
4. Apple is the leading mobile phone vendor in the US for 2020.
There are all sorts of phone manufacturers and distributors.
Are you wondering what mobile phone dealer has the most significant market share?
Who’s the mightiest of them all?
Well, the proof is in the pudding, and here is the data:
According to mobile device usage statistics for 2021, US consumers mostly prefer Apple devices compared to all other brands in the market. The company has over 50% of the total market, with Samsung, the closest competitor trailing behind at 26.95%. That’s a whopping 28% difference!
5. Global 5G enabled smartphone shipment is likely to be at 51% by 2023.
The 5G rollouts are still ongoing in 2020. As you may know, users need to change devices to access the 5th generation network. Otherwise, there won’t be any change in terms of performance. And if you are curious about the next-gen technology, here you can find what 5G is and how it will affect our society.
As of 2020, shipment for devices around the world is at 11.8%. Predictions show that 5G enabled devices will continue to gain market share rapidly and will improve by 39.2% by 2023.
6. Facebook has a search volume of 151,500,000 in 2020.
Are you wondering what people are searching for most on the internet this year?
Well, mobile internet usage statistics for 2020 show that the majority of phone owners are obsessed with Facebook. The social network platform is ahead of YouTube (142,200,000) and Amazon (87,440,000), which come in at numbers 2 and 3, respectively.
This is a great time for marketers to focus their efforts on this social network, right?
7. Smartphone ownership among women has risen to 55% in 2020.
The gender gap when it comes to smartphone ownership is steadily declining.
For a long time, men were the leading consumers in this category, but women are catching up.
According to smartphone usage statistics for 2020, over 50% of women now own the devices. This percentage is a notable increase compared to 2017 when it stood at 44%.
8. Mobile internet users are set to reach 287.1 million by 2023 in the US alone.
That means about 87% of the US population will be using mobile internet. For comparison, smartphone usage stats show that in 2018, this number stood at 262.4 million.
General Smartphone Usage Statistics
Let’s start with the basics. Mobile internet is slowly becoming the king of internet connectivity, at least as far as consumers are concerned.
9. Consumers spend over 3 hours on their smartphones daily.
In 2018 the daily usage of mobile devices among US adults was about 3 hours 35 minutes on average (That’s around 52 days in a year!).
10. Mobile currently accounts for more than half of the global internet traffic.
Given that people spend so much time on their smartphones, you might be wondering: what percentage of internet traffic is mobile? According to a report from 2018, 52.2% of all website traffic worldwide came from smartphones.
11. M-commerce overtook ecommerce for the first time in 2019.
(Source: Mobile Marketer)
2019 was likely to be the year of m-commerce! According to a report, m-commerce transactions overtook ecommerce globally in 2019 for the first time.
12. 48.33% of the world’s population owned a smartphone in 2021.
(Source: Bank My Cell)
Almost half of everybody on the planet owns a smartphone! This figure is up considerably from 2016 when there were only 2.5 billion users, 33.58% of that year’s global population.
13. 35% of US consumers use only their mobile devices to shop online.
M-commerce is no longer a fad—it’s the status quo.
14. M-commerce generated nearly 73% of the total US ecommerce sales in 2021.
M-commerce is booming! In 2016, just over 50% of the total US ecommerse sales were made from a mobile phone. This year, it sits at 72.9%.
15. In 2020, 1.38 billion smartphones were sold worldwide.
While m-commerce numbers are growing, the number of smartphones sold declined last year. In 2019, vendors sold 1.54 billion smartphones. A year later, that number stood at 1.38 billion. This decline could be due to the pandemic, but the number of phones sold stayed roughly the same even in the years prior.
16. There are more mobile connections than people.
(Source: Bank My Cell)
The current global population is 7.8 billion. But there are almost 11 billion mobile connections worldwide! As mentioned before, not everybody has a mobile phone. The number also includes dual SIM’s or mobile connections integrated into other devices.
17. By 2023, there will be 7.33 billion mobile device users.
(Source: Bank My Cell)
The number of mobile phone users won’t slow down anytime soon. Experts predict that it will surpass seven billion by 2023. If that doesn’t motivate you to optimize your site for mobile, I don’t know what will!
Mobile Internet Usage Statistics – What Do We Do Online?
Now let’s find out how mobile internet users are spending their time online!
18. Watching movies/videos online is the most popular mobile internet activity.
In a global online survey, 52% of mobile internet users stated they watch movies/videos online on their mobile devices. That comes as no surprise, considering how many streaming services offer high-quality content at an affordable price.
The second most popular internet activity among mobile users was checking emails while using social media came third.
19. 3 out of 4 Americans primarily use their smartphones to check their emails.
(Source: Blue Corona)
Recent smartphone stats show 75% of people prefer to check their email on their mobile devices rather than on desktops or laptops.
20. Users spend nearly 70% of their media time on smartphones on average.
(Source: Blue Corona)
People tend to use mobile apps and mobile browsers more to access social media sites.
21. 51% of consumers use their smartphones to discover new brands and products.
Apparently, you need to optimize your ad campaigns for mobile to get noticed.
22. People spend 89% of their mobile media time on apps on average.
(Source: Smart Insights)
Recent app usage statistics show mobile applications have become a big part of our daily lives. We’re spending nearly 4.5 hours a day using them on average!
Mobile Use Statistics for Businesses
M-commerce is bigger than most of us imagine!
23. 11% of people shop online via mobile on a weekly basis.
Online shopping is the 5th most popular mobile internet activity, with 11% of consumers saying they use their smartphones to shop online at least once a week.
24. In 2020, the m-commerce industry was worth $339.03 billion in the US.
M-commerce is not just a passing trend—it’s a multi-billion dollar industry in the US alone.
25. About 187.5 million US mobile phone users will make some form of m-commerce transaction in 2024.
M-commerce is growing at a rapid speed. Experts predict that nearly 190 million Americans will make at least one purchase through their mobile device in 2024. In 2020, this number was 167.7 million.
26. 79% of mobile users have used their mobile phones to make an online purchase in the last 6 months.
Nearly 8 out of 10 smartphone users have done shopping on the go in the past 6 months.
Mobile App Statistics
There are millions of mobile apps out there!
27. Smartphone users made 218 billion app downloads in 2020.
People are downloading more mobile apps every year. According to recent mobile phone usage statistics, consumers made 218 billion app downloads in 2020. In 2017, 178.2 apps were downloaded.
28. Nearly 1 in 4 apps is a game app.
The most popular app category in the Apple app store is “gaming”. These apps make up almost 25% of what the store has to offer.
29. Only 65% of mobile phone users download game apps.
Even though gaming apps outnumber other types of mobile apps, they get downloaded less often. Recent smartphone statistics show 90% of mobile phone users have a communication app, an entertainment app, a shopping app, a utility app and a search app. On the other hand, only 65% of them have downloaded a game app.
30. 51% of mobile phone users download zero apps a month.
While people are spending more time with mobile apps, over 50% of users don’t download any apps and 13% download only 1 app a month.
31. Amazon is the most important app for millennials.
(Source: Business Insider)
32. 18- to 24-year-olds use mobile apps the most.
Usage statistics for smartphones show the younger demographic uses mobile apps for over 3 hours daily. On the other hand, smartphone users aged 55 and up spend less than 2 hours using apps every day.
33. 36% of millennials purchased 5 or more apps in 2017.
Younger people are more willing to spend money on mobile apps. While 36% of all millennial mobile users purchased 5 or more apps in 2017, only 3% of older adults did the same.
34. 46% of younger mobile users made 5+ in-app purchases in 2017.
Recent mobile usage statistics show millennials are more comfortable making in-app purchases. While 46% of all Gen Y smartphone users made 5+ in-app purchases in 2017, just 5% of people aged 50 and older did the same.
35. Users spend nearly 60% of their mobile time in social networking, music, media, and game apps.
Smartphone users are spending the bulk of their total mobile time in 4 app categories: social networking (20%), music (18%), media (10%), and games (10%).
36. Google Play is the largest app store with 2.1 million apps–but Apple’s app store is not far behind.
When it comes to mobile apps, both Android and iOS users are spoiled for choice. While Google Play has 2.1 million apps, Apple’s app store, the second-largest app store, offers 2 million apps.
37. Mobile phone users spend 50% of their in-app time in one app.
Even though people are spending more time using mobile apps than ever before, half of that goes to just a single app. They also spend almost all their time in just their 10 favorite apps.
Now let’s look at some mobile vs desktop usage stats!
38. 54.8% of global web traffic came from mobile devices in Q1 2021.
More than half of all web traffic comes from mobile devices (excluding tables). Since 2017, it has been near the 50% mark, but it’s slowly increasing.
39. American mobile users spent less time per site visit than desktop users.
Mobile internet usage stats show mobile bounce rate is improving–but it was still higher than desktop bounce rate in 2020 by more than 10%!
40. Conversion rates for mobile sessions are much lower than those on desktop.
Globally, users who browse a website on their mobile convert to customers at a rate of 1.32%, while the same stat for desktop is at 3.82%.
Let’s look at the latest developments!
41. Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality are expected to become key factors in mobile app development.
Experts predict millions of users will use Augmented Reality by the end of 2020. In addition to game apps, ecommerce and marketing apps will soon start to deliver a better customer experience.
42. Total revenue from the Google Play Store and the Apple Store reached $111 billion in 2021.
(Source: Business of Apps)
Recent mobile statistics prove consumers are becoming more comfortable making in-app purchases. In 2021, the Google Play Store and the Apple Store made over $111 billion in revenue!
43. The number of mobile app downloads worldwide will be $258 billion in 2022.
The demand for mobile apps is slated to grow steadily. For 2022, experts predict 258 billion app downloads, a 45% increase over 5 years.
Finally, it’s time for some fun facts!
44. 33% of Americans would rather give up sex for a year than stop using their smartphones.
(Source: Blue Corona)
Mobile internet usage stats show 1 in 3 Americans enjoy their mobile phone more than sex!
45. More people in the world own a smartphone than a toothbrush.
(Source: Consumer Technology Association)
This goes to show how important the mobile phone has become to us!
46. 55% of users feel anxious when they don’t have their smartphone on them.
(Source: Pixel Union)
Don’t take these mobile browsing stats lightly. This is a serious problem affecting millions. It causes nervousness, cold sweats, and anxiety and occurs when people can’t access their smartphones. There’s even a word for this new-age phenomenon—nomophobia (or no mobile phobia)!
This is truly the age of mobile. More than 60% of people worldwide own a mobile phone.
We use them to stay connected with our family and friends, to browse the internet, to watch videos and movies, and even to shop.
As a matter of fact, recent mobile internet usage stats show mobile commerce is already a billion-dollar industry.
By the end of 2019, m-commerce will be bigger than ecommerce!
Think that best of m-commerce is yet to come?
It sure looks that way.
0.15 billion is the average number of daily active internet users in 2020.
That figure translates to about 4.57 billion users per month, which is about 59% of the world population.
China has the highest number of internet users.
The country has more than 748 million, followed closely by India, with 455 million. The USA takes the third position with 245 million users.
More than 50% of all searches come from mobile devices on a global scale.
The US takes 58% of overall search queries. The leading category here is food and beverage.
According to global mobile internet usage stats, 53% of internet traffic comes from mobile phones. This figure has increased by 37% since 2013 when it was just 16%.
- Mobile Marketer
- Blue Corona
- Bright Edge
- Smart Insights
- Business Insider
- Pixel Union
- Bank My Cell
- Bank My Cell
- Business of Apps
- Bank My Cell