JuxtConsult, an internet research firm based in New Delhi, has estimated that India has about 11 million (1.1 crore) mobile internet users, which is an increase of more than 100 per cent as compared to last year. In April 2009, JuxtConsult claimed that India had about 5 million mobile internet users.
However, mobile internet users also access the internet from their personal computers or laptops. It is estimated that the total online population in the country is around 51 million. Of that, 40 million reside in urban areas, while the remaining 11 million are in rural areas. Last year, the urban and rural internet base stood at around 39 million and 8 million, respectively.
The study also tracks usage and preferences of internet users in India. It covers both 'regular' and 'occasional' internet users, as well as 'computer' and 'mobile' based internet users. These findings are based on an online survey conducted in April and May 2010, among more than 12,994 respondents.
The findings state that 97 per cent of active users are regular internet users -- who surf the internet at least once a month; while 79 per cent are daily users.
The most popular online activities among regular users are: e-mail (94 per cent users); downloading music (72 per cent); instant messaging (56 per cent); job search (56 per cent), social networking (54 per cent); information search (52 per cent) and watching videos (50 per cent). Other popular activities include downloading wallpapers and screensavers and sending SMSes through the personal computer.
Among the most used websites are Google and Yahoo; 46 per cent and 11 per cent surfers, respectively, regularly log on to these sites. About 4 per cent users log on to Rediff regularly. Other most used sites are Facebook, Youtube, Orkut, Moneycontrol and Blogspot.
The study also lists the most used websites for specific online activities among the regular surfers.
Thus, SBI's website is the most used site for Net banking (29 per cent users) and Sharekhan.com is used by 18 per cent users for online share trading.Moneycontrol.com is the most preferred site for financial news and information (18 per cent users).
In the online shopping space, IRCTC is the most used website for online travel purchases (51 per cent users); while Ebay.in is the most preferred site for non-travel purchases (32 per cent users) and for the purchase of CDs online (23 per cent users).
YouTube is the most used website for watching videos (76 per cent) and video sharing (36 per cent). TorrentZ (30 per cent) and SongsPK (27 per cent) are the most preferred sites for downloading movies and music, respectively.
Google properties rank high with regular internet users. Gmail is the preferred site for email (62 per cent users), GTalk for instant messaging (41 per cent) and Google.com for information search (79 per cent). Orkut is the most used website for friendship and dating (46 per cent), sharing pictures (37 per cent), social networking (53 per cent) and professional networking (35 per cent).
Among the classifieds websites, Naukri.com is used by 48 per cent of regular internet surfers for job searches. Bharatmatrimony.com is the most used portal for matrimony (38 per cent users) searches.
Yahoo is most used site for online news (23 per cent), Zapak.com for online games (26 per cent) and 123Greetings.com for online cards (48 per cent users).