London, Nov 26 : Millions of mobile phone owners in the UK use their handsets to access the Internet, a new research by analyst firm Nielsen Online has found.
The media analyst firm says that some 7.3 million people are accessing the Internet via their mobile devices, from 5.8 million, compared to a three per cent rise for PC-based Internet.
This, according to the research, is an increase of 25 percent compared to a growth of just 3 percent for the PC-based net audience, reports BBC.
The study also found that the mobile net audience was younger and searched for different things.
Google remained the most popular site for those logging on via the desktop, whereas on mobile internet BBC News was the most visited site, the research found.
"This highlights the advantage of mobile when it comes to immediacy: people often need fast, instant access to weather or sports news and mobile can obviously satisfy this," said Kent Ferguson, asenior analyst with Nielsen Online.
"The fact that weather, sports, news and e-mail sites make up the majority of leading mobile sites shows that mobile internet is mainly about functionality and need at the moment as opposed to the more entertainment and e-commerce-focused makeup of the leading PC-based sites," he added.
Younger web users are also more likely to surf the net on their mobile phones than their computers, with a quarter of all mobile internet users aged between 15 and 24, compared to just 16 per cent of PC web users.
By contrast, older people prefer to use their computers to surf the internet, with just 12 per cent of mobile web users aged 55 and over, compared to 23 per cent of PC web users.