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Mobile Internet on the rise, but not yet threatening the computer

I’ve said it before and now a survey backs me up: despite mobile device functionality becoming ever more sophisticated, research by mobile media company BuzzCity ( shows that mobiles are actually sustaining, not replacing, consumer demand for computers.

The global research, which surveyed 5,000 people, found that computing tools remain important and even aspirational, for mobile Internet users. Fifty-one percent of mobile Internet users don’t have daily access to fixed line Internet, and 23% don’t use the fixed Internet at all.

Of those surveyed, 21% plan to buy a computer accessory in the next 12 months and 36% have already tried out tablets. So although ultimately mobiles may overtake computers for Internet browsing, there are absolutely no signs that the computer will disappear.

Mobile gaming is a whole different ball game, however, and the indications are that the rise of mobile gaming is detrimentally affecting demand for games consoles — compared to 2008, demand for games consoles has fallen, to 7.94%. Which is why I think that Apple will bring gaming to the Apple TV, but won’t release its own game console, as some pundits have predicted.

“Mobile browsing has been viewed as a threat to computers, but our research shows that this is drastically oversimplifying things,” says Dr KF Lai, CEO of BuzzCity. “Many people use the Internet on a range of devices, both mobile and otherwise.”

The BuzzCity study only looked at Internet usage. But also when it comes to content creation — or content consumption on a big screen — the computer, especially the Mac, is still the best choice around.

— Dennis Sellers

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