Opera State of the Mobile Web Report showcases greater gender equality

Women flock to the mobile Web.

In just two years, the number of women on the mobile Web has risen 575%, according to Opera’s State of the Mobile Web Report, published today. South Africa leads the world’s push for gender equality on the mobile Web, with women accounting for nearly 44% of mobile web users.

Opera’s State of the Mobile Web Report, published monthly, provides information on the top global trends affecting the mobile Web. The full report is available from http://www.opera.com/smw/ (English only). This month’s report includes the first results from a survey of more than 300,000 Opera Mini users, as well as a snapshot of mobile web trends in Southeast Asia.

Opera Mini demographics:
Starting in late July and running over the course of several weeks, we conducted a survey to learn more about Opera Mini users around the world. In addition to collecting user demographic data for this report, the survey sought to quantify various aspects of their online/mobile lifestyle. Those lifestyle issues will be discussed in future reports, but one relevant question is discussed below as a special preview.

The survey, displayed to Opera Mini users on their handsets, was deployed in 9 languages (Russian, English, Indonesian, Chinese, Vietnamese, Portuguese, German, Polish and Japanese). Every Opera Mini user in those languages was offered the survey. Data was collected from users in 15 listed countries, as well as “other”. The data below is from the top 10 countries according to Opera Mini usage (as of June 2010).

As of 8/10/2010, over 300,000 survey responses were collected.


  • Using data from the top 10 countries, we estimated the global ratio of male to female mobile Web users to be 77% (male) to 23% (female). Two years ago, the ratio we reported was 88% (male) to 12% (female). While male users still clearly outnumber female users, females on the mobile Web are increasing at a faster rate — catching up to their male counterparts. Between May 2008 and July 2010, we estimate that the number of male users increased by 233%, while the number of female users increased by 575%. Looked at another way, the percentage of female users nearly doubled (from 12% to 23%) in that time period. This seems to indicate a trend towards greater gender equality when it comes to mobile Web browsing.
  • South Africa has the most female users (43.5%), followed by the United States (35.6%), Russia (32.4%) and the United Kingdom (31.5%).
  • India has the fewest female users (4.0%), followed by Nigeria (5.4%), China (11.6%) and Vietnam (17.9%).
  • Compared to the last time we surveyed Opera Mini users, some significant changes were observed. In Russia, the percentage of female users increased from 12.5% to 32.4%. In China, the percentage of female users increased from 5.5% to 11.6%. In the United States, the percentage of female users increased from 19.4% to 35.6%. In South Africa, the percentage of female users increased from 24.7% to 43.5%. In Ukraine, the percentage of female users increased from 8.5% to 24.2%. In the United Kingdom, the percentage of female users increased from 16.6% to 31.5%.
  • Ukraine and Vietnam have the most users under 18 (34.8% and 23.7%, respectively).
  • Across the board, 18-27 is still the biggest age group of Opera Mini users. That said, when looking at the previous survey results, one will notice that the under-18 user base in the United States and the United Kingdom grew (proportionally) at the expense of the 18-27 group.
  • The United States and the United Kingdom have a lot of users who are 38 and older (26% and 21%, respectively).

What we say:

“We believe access to the Web is a universal right and the mobile Web is all about breaking down barriers to access,” said Jon von Tetzchner, co-founder, Opera Software. “Seeing more women on the mobile Web is important to ensuring the mobile Web remains the rich tapestry of ideas it is. Further diversity can only improve things for everyone.”

State of the Mobile Web Report archive: http://www.opera.com/smw/archive/



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