U.S. No Longer a Wireless Backwater

Today, my colleague Olga Kharif wrote a surprising story reporting that the U.S. is no longer a wireless backwater, according to new survey data from researchers comScore M:Metrics and Nielsen Mobile. How so?

Chalk it up to the proliferation of third generation networks, the surge in demand for smartphones like the Apple iPhone, and Google’s push into wireless software. All of these factors are sparking a burst of wireless innovation.

Consider some facts from the story:

* In the past year, the U.S. surpassed Western Europe in the number of subscribers to the high-speed networks known as 3G, according to consultancy comScore M:Metrics (SCOR).

* While a year ago 6% of Americans who bought phones purchased smartphones, capable of Web

* The U.S. is now neck and neck with Western Europe in use of short text messages (SMS), multimedia messaging, and mobile games. More Americans, meanwhile, use mobile e-mail and instant messaging, according to Nielsen Mobile.

* Mobile Web browsing in the U.S. is also on a tear, but it’s still a few percentage points behind the Europeans. Some 17% of Americans browse on the mobile Web, compared to 20% of Western Europeans, according to Nielsen.


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