Speed up the mobile web – smartphone users will switch off after eight seconds

13 Feb 2013

Smartphone users require speedy download times or they will abandon the effort, new research reveals, placing the onus on brands and site owners to come up with mobile-optimised web pages. The new Citrix ByteMobile survey reveals that the average smartphone user will go elsewhere if their page hasn’t downloaded within eight seconds.

The Citrix ByteMobile survey reveals that while about 50pc of mobile web pages download in eight seconds or less across wireless networks, 20pc of pages requested take longer than 20 seconds to download.

When it comes to a poor mobile web experience, more than half (51pc) of mobile-device owners blame their providers, while 49pc blame the website.

The Mobile Analytics Report confirms that wireless networks across North America deliver the fastest web page download times in the world.  

Video remains king of mobile traffic

The Mobile Analytics Report reveals that 20pc of subscribers watch mobile videos on a given day, with 74pc of consumer survey respondents seeking out most videos they watch.

Of the videos consumed on mobile devices, 92pc are low-resolution video at 360p or less. However, a majority of survey respondents (64pc) said they thought they were viewing high-resolution video.

This indicates a clear disconnect in the quality of video a subscriber thinks they are consuming versus the reality. The latest report further reveals that two out of 10 mobile subscribers watched video on mobile devices, generating more than 50pc of the total mobile data traffic on wireless networks.

Today, mobile video subscribers watch an average of two minutes of video content at a time, doubling the time spent consuming video as reported in the February 2010 Mobile Analytics Report.

The future of advertising

The Mobile Analytics Report discovered mobile advertisements containing video content generated 10 times more data per advertisement than those without video.

Interestingly, the report revealed the top 4 advertising networks, both by subscriber reach and total data volume generated, are owned by Google – Double Click, Google, Admob and 2mdn.

For smartphone subscribers, mobile advertisements consume 1pc of the total monthly data traffic generated. While minimal, this percentage is expected to increase as mobile advertising continues to grow.

Health apps are getting big

People are increasingly using mobile devices to support health goals and track their fitness progress. Personal fitness applications dominate the category, generating 50pc of the total mobile health-related data traffic on wireless networks.

Additionally, 39pc of subscribers use a fitness-specific application, while 47pc use a pregnancy-related application. Interestingly, pregnancy-monitoring applications generate 9pc of the total mobile health-related data traffic on wireless networks.

Mobile gaming continues to be popular among subscribers. The report found that the three most popular games played while connected to a wireless network are Words with Friends, Temple Run and Angry Birds.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years