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The future of the mobile internet is in Asia

Asia’s mobile usage was already the world’s largest in 2010. But what happened next – to use the Upworthy trope – will astonish you.

Between 2010 and the end of 2013, mobile web uptake exploded around the world. Especially in Asia. Thanks to charts created by Robin Moroney from Google Singapore using data from ITU, we’ve created this GIF to show that huge take-off:

The mobile internet is the Asian internet - 2010 to 2013

What’s more astonishing is how the mobile web numbers in Asia took off relative to the rest of the world. If we re-jig that same data so it shows mobile web users for each area [1] as a percentage of the world total, something dramatic happens. While Asia goes into warp drive as it heads into 2013, Europe and America go backwards:

The mobile internet is the Asian internet - 2010 to 2013

So that’s the future of the mobile internet: Asia. Both in terms of sheer numbers and soaring growth, no tech company – or, indeed, any business whatsoever – can ignore the fact that their content, their message, needs to be easily conveyed to the 895 million web-connected mobile users in Asia right now – and the billions there will be soon. This image shows the current layout:

The mobile internet is the Asian internet

Check out Robin’s interactive chart for yourself, or see the raw numbers from ITU (PDF file).

(Editing by Terence Lee)


  1. CIS stand for the Commonwealth of Independent States. It’s an alliance of 12 of the 15 former republics of the Soviet Union, namely: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan.  ↩



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