India has anywhere from 46m to 150m mobile internet users

IAMAI & IMRB report India will have 46 million mobile internet users by Sept 2011, just recently Google India reported the number to be 150 million. The gap between the two numbers is huge, pick which ever suits you.

Few details from “Mobile Internet in India Report 2011” carried by IAMAI/IMRB [download entire report],

  • Primary research for the study was conducted through surveys among various households in 30 cities.
  • Mobile phones have the potential to become a primary internet access point owing to the increasing influence of mobile apps, introduction of 3G services, availability of better mobile phones, and a rising mobile subscriber base.
  • Mobile internet users will touch a figure of 46 million in September, 2011.
  • Of these, 35 million will be active mobile internet users (that is, accessing internet using their mobile phones, at least once a month).
  • The research also suggests that there is a 15 per cent quarter-on-quarter growth in the usage of internet on mobile phones.

Demography of Mobile Internet Users in India

  • The study points out that 70 per cent of the claimed mobile internet users (urban India) belong to the top two SECs (SEC A and B).
  • About 55 per cent of the claimed mobile internet users are from the top eight metros, namely Mumbai, Delhi and NCR, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Pune and Ahmedabad.
  • About 63 per cent of the active mobile internet users are from the top eight metros.

3G And Mobile Apps in India

  • Technology wise, India lags in a big way as most of us are still on 2G. Western countries are already on 4G.
  • Mobile internet usage is looking promising with the introduction of 3G spectrum and growing popularity of mobile applications (apps).
  • Around 5.4 million active users have access to mobile apps.
  • Mobile applications will be at the heart of mobile internet growth in India.
  • Smartphones playing an important role in usage of mobile internet in India.

Google India’s figures were 3 times IAMAI’s figure. Google India had segregated the off-deck (50m) and on-deck (100m) users. It would be useful to the city wise userbase of this 46m (or 150m). Reports say Airtel alone has 60m GPRS users and most believe the total number is close to 100-120m, so 150m is really not that far away in the grand scheme of things.

Oneindia’s mobile efforts has seen considerable growth in page views (both WAP & mobile apps). I would like to see a lot more action on the revenue front for the mobile space. Reasonably confident revenues will take off soon.

Either way, mobile internet is on the rise in India.


  1. Yes I agree and accept the figures of Mobile Internet Users in India. The 3G currently is costly but few months down the line going to be surely much more affordable. The only question will be of the speed. Will Increasing number of 3G able to handle the Internet speed load.


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