The mobile web: today, asparagus; tomorrow, the world

asparagus by Muffet on Flickr

Carlo Longino on Mobhappy and Tarek Abu-Esber at Mobile Messaging 2.0 both asked this week “When Will The Mobile Web Be Mass Market?” – a question prompted by the declaration from Nielsen Mobile that we’ve now reached critical mass. According to Nielsen, 12.9% of the UK population used the mobile internet in Q1 2008.

Now obviously I’m biased but I reckon many marketers would trade their grandmothers for a piece of a product touching one in eight consumers less than 10 years on from launch. Only by comparison to its Brobdingnagian parents, mobile telephony and fixed internet, could the mobile web be described as small. It has every chance of meeting then exceeding their growth in the future.

But while we debate the vagueries of what it means to be mass market, I thought it worth pointing out one small but very real notch on the new arrival’s height chart. At 12.9%, more Britons now use the mobile internet than eat asparagus (12.4%, apparently). And it won’t even make your wee smell funny, I promise.

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