Apple vs. Motorola: Moto Phone Users Browse the Web More?!

Posted by: Olga Kharif on September 10, 2008

Last night, mobile advertising platform AdMob released some fascinating metrics. The company, which serves ads to more than 5,000 mobile Web sites around the world, tracks mobile Web traffic from smartphones.

And some of its findings are surprising: Today, we assume that users of Apple’s iPhone access the Web far more than users of other devices. Not true, according to AdMob’s U.S. data. Surprisingly, users of Motorola’s Razr V3 are more than four times as likely to access mobile Web sites (as measured by the number of ad requests they submit whenever they access sites on AdMob’s network). Motorola Krzr K1c generates more than three times the number of requests of the iPhone as well. AdMob’s statistics could be skewed, as the company only tracks certain sites.

If reflective of overall trends, these findings could indicate that users don’t need encouragement of touch screens and user-friendly menus to get onto the mobile Web. Motorola’s designs — which have been pooh-poohed for months — may work just as well, if not better.

Do you think AdMob’s findings are reflective of larger trends? How do you explain them?

Reader Comments

Kirk Walsh

September 10, 2008 1:04 PM

If they are only tracking mobile web sites, that might explain it. The iPhone doesn't use normal mobile sites unless you tell it to and a lot of the major sites have iPhone specific pages that are different than their normal mobile pages.

This might explain the difference.

And in no way would I use my wife's RAZR to surf the web.

Jack

September 10, 2008 3:32 PM

a few things:

- they tracked web sites around the world. The iphone was a domestic product until two months ago.
- the key point term here is "mobile web sites". the whole point of the iphone is that you can surf the "regular" web. If you have a razr you have to use the "mobile web".
- back June 9, Steve Jobs noted in a WWDC keynote that 98% of iphone users were using it to surf the web. I don't know if computer manufacturers can claim that number, let alone another phone developer :-)
- When you get the razr, you don't have to get web access. When you get the iphone, I "think" you get everything at once.

In my opinion, Admob is trying to finesse stats to get some PR. iPhone is hot, and they are trying to ride the wave and create a "relevant story" to raise brand awareness. I think that their logic is flawed though.

Vadim Isakov

September 10, 2008 9:16 PM

What if an iPhone user spends all of her web-time on checking Yahoo! mail, looking at Google maps or browsing through rss reader. What that count as "visiting Web sites?"

Many iPhone applications allow you to use all benefits of the Web without really "going to the Web site." That may explain the findings...

Jason Spero

September 12, 2008 12:51 AM

Full disclosure – I’m VP of Marketing at AdMob. I wanted to clarify a couple questions in the thread. We have been providing our monthly Metrics report for over a year now, and many in the mobile community have found it useful to see trends in the usage of various handsets and devices.

With regards to the iPhone question: we serve ads on our partner’s mobile sites, so when the users surf the “regular” web on the iPhone that traffic isn’t included in the Metrics report. Much of the tremendous growth we are seeing in iPhone requests are coming from the creation of iPhone specific mobile sites. This traffic is included in the report and these sites represent a growing part of AdMob’s business. As content owners look to improve the mobile experience, we believe more and more mobile specific sites will be created and the mobile web will continue its strong growth in the face of more handsets having the ability to surf the “regular” web.

One additional point of clarification – the report doesn’t state that a Motorola RAZR user is more likely to surf the mobile web that an iPhone user, it simply states that our publisher sites see more traffic from RAZRs than iPhones. The mobile web existed and was seeing explosive growth well before the iPhone hit the scene –many millions of these devices are still in heavy use today.

Thanks for the questions. Jason

gerry

September 24, 2008 9:58 PM

People assume that the iPhone is such a global phenom.

That is not the case.

And folks assume that the iPhone is just kicking all the other models and carriers butts...

that is also not the case.

The iPhone is offered in limited areas by limited carriers and not available to all. It's price point and accompanying carrier bundle package price are cost prohibitive to many.

When talking globally, the iPhone comprises less than 9% of global share of the wireless mobile arena.

Yet with all the hype and focus being placed on this one product and one product alone the remaining 91% of the global market has gone virtually un-noticed.

This is an obvious Madison Avenue mentality...and one you will only find here in the states.

I am amazed to think and read about all these ad types and gurus who yet have to acknowledge that the mobile internet is here and a viable part of life.

So anyone who finds the AdMob metrics skewed or surprising is viewing things through Madison Avenue/Steve Jobs spectacles.

Raz

September 26, 2008 12:38 PM

Fully agree with Gerry above. iPhone hopes to sell 10 Million phones a year, while Nokia moves 10 Million phones in a week. The biggest market is where the large number of people find platform-independent access: on the mobile web.

Ray Anderson

September 29, 2008 10:45 AM

Echoing the comments above, its reasonable to assume that the iPhone browses more traditional web sites than a typical mobile phone - because they can't.

On the other hand, many millions of people in the USA and elsewhere browse the internet on their mobiles, and they only see sites optimized for mobile screens (iMode or XHTML or WAP/WML). The iPhone is largely invisible in this world. (See the top 20 most popular handsets browsing sites optimized for mobile phone users here http://bango.com/support/top20handsets.aspx ).

Google estimates that the number of people browsing sites optimized for mobiles is 10X more than the 200million or so users they reach with ads today - thats why they are treating mobile as a topic of great importance.

As Admob shows, there is a big market out there of RAZR, Nokia, SonyEricsson users out there that goes largely ignored by those viewing things through Steve Jobs's spectacles.

Post a comment

 

About

Bloomberg Businessweek writers Peter Burrows, Cliff Edwards, Olga Kharif, Aaron Ricadela, and Douglas MacMillan, dig behind the headlines to analyze what’s really happening throughout the world of technology. Tech Beat covers everything from tech bellwethers like Apple, Google, and Intel and emerging new leaders such as Facebook to new technologies, trends, and controversies.

Categories

 

BW Mall - Sponsored Links

Buy a link now!