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Internet usage by mobile and tablet devices exceeded desktop worldwide for the first time in October according to Web analytics company StatCounter. The analyst group found that mobile and tablet devices accounted for 51.3 percent of Internet usage worldwide in October, compared to 48.7 percent by desktop.

“This should be a wake-up call, especially for small businesses, sole traders and professionals to make sure that their Web sites are mobile friendly. Many older Web sites are not,” commented Aodhan Cullen, StatCounter CEO. He added: “Mobile compatibility is increasingly important not just because of growing traffic but because Google favours mobile friendly Web sites for its mobile search results.”

Despite the rapid growth of mobile devices, desktop is still the primary mode of Internet usage in mature markets such as the US and UK, StatCounter said. 

However, Cullen warned: “Post-Brexit, UK businesses should be aware, as they look to increase trade outside the EU, that India for example has over 75 percent Internet usage through mobile devices.”

In the UK, desktop usage is at 55.6 percent, with mobile and tablet use at 44.4 percent. In the US desktop still accounts for 58 percent of Internet usage compared to 42 percent for mobile and tablet.
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