Opera again showcased the growth of the mobile web with today’s installment of its monthly report of Opera Mini usage, but in a world where web-friendly smartphones are gaining traction its data may be getting stale. While there’s no doubt that Opera Mini has amassed a huge following, it’s unclear how instructive the company’s statistics are when it comes to overall mobile web usage.
Mini is a great alternative for feature phones and other handsets with inferior embedded browsers, but as AdMob pointed out again last month, iPhones and other high-tech smartphones with advanced browsers are driving a huge amount of traffic on the mobile web. Opera is running neck-and-neck with the iPhone in the mobile browser market, according to StatCounter Global Stats.
“I think in a way (Opera’s statistics) mirrors overall mobile web usage very well,” Assev said. “This is proving that there is just one web. As long as you can access the Internet, it doesn’t matter which device you are using; you’re just going to the same pages that you would go to on a computer.”
It’s All About Google
However, as long as we take the results with a grain of salt, there are some interesting data points hidden in this month’s report. Google (s goog) proved once again that it is the destination of choice for users of the popular mobile browser. Google — or a localized version thereof — ranked in the top 10 most visited sites in Opera Mini’s top 10 international markets in September, and was the most popular site for Mini users in the U.S. and India. Facebook also was popular among Mini users, ranking as the top destination in Great Britain and South Africa and the second-most popular in the U.S.