The number of Brits using mobile internet has risen by 25 percent to 7.3 million between Q2 and Q3 this year, says Nielsen Online.

According to research by the company, PC-based internet use has only increased by 3 percent in the same period. The research also highlighted that the biggest user group of mobile internet was those aged 15-24, with 25 percent of all users appearing in this category.

In comparison, the biggest user group of PC-based internet was the 23 percent of all users that are aged 55 and over. The survey also revealed that while Google was the most popular site with PC-based surfers, the BBC News website was most popular with those using mobile broadband, with 24 percent of all users visiting this site.

Mobile Internet devices, such as the Apple iPhone 3G and RIM BlackBerry Storm, have transformed the media over the past year.


Of the most popular mobile sites, BBC Weather (21% mobile, 17% PC-based) Sky Sports (11% mobile, 8% PC-based) and Gmail (9% mobile, 7% PC-based) have greater reach on mobile Internet than they do on the PC-based Internet

Of the most popular mobile sites, Google Search (23% mobile, 79% PC-based) and eBay (13% mobile, 43% PC-based) have the greatest reach differential between mobile and PC-based Internet.

"When it comes to the Internet, the huge growth is now happening through the mobile platform and that the mobile online audience is younger than its PC-based counterpart," said Kent Ferguson, senior analyst at Nielsen.

"The fact that the most weather, sports, news and email sites make up the majority of leading mobile sites show that mobile Internet is mainly about functionality and need at the moment as opposed to the more entertainment and ecommerce-focused makeup of the leading PC-based sites," added Ferguson.

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