As the power of our BlackBerrys and other smartphones grow, it’s always interesting to see the new ways in which people start using them to either send or receive information. I have the Google Search button sitting in the top six icons of my BlackBerry Bold’s Zen theme, so I can personally attest to the growth in mobile search (perfect for a quick IMDB or settling a bar bet), but I didn’t think the numbers would be quite this large.
M:Metrics is reporting that in June 2008, 20.8 million U.S. mobile subscribers and 4.5 million European mobile phone subscribers accessed search during the month, an increase of 68% and 38% from June 2007, respectively. The UK had the highest penetration of mobile subscribers using search at 9.5 percent, followed closely by the U.S. at 9.2 percent. Mobile search is growing not only in number, but in frequency as well.
“It is interesting to note that as we see the number of mobile search users increase, the frequency of activity is also growing,” observed Alistair Hill, analyst, comScore. “The number of people accessing mobile search at least once a week grew 50 percent in Europe, with France and Spain leading at a rate of 69 and 63 percent, respectively. Meanwhile, the number of U.S. users accessing mobile search has more than doubled as a result of expanded 3G penetration and smartphone adoption, as well as the proliferation of flat-rate data plans. We have also seen a substantial improvement to the mobile search offerings in the U.S. market.”
Question time, folks: what do you search for on your BlackBerry? Please don’t say porn.