Kenny Ye, Managing Director of UCWeb India, said “We want to assert that this is just the beginning for us in this market and the coming few years are going to be ‘Golden Age’ for Indian mobile internet, given the rapid growth of mobile internet users in India. The biggest drivers of the growth in this space are thedecreased mobile data charges which result in increased consumption of online video, mobile gaming, and mobile commerce, and we believe that these factors will continue to be the main growth drivers.”
Get a bigger slice of the pie in India by making the internet more accessible
According to an IAMAI report, the number of mobile internet users in India has witnessed a steady rise, with 110 million mobile internet users in October 2013. This is estimated to reach 130 million by the end of December. As the leading mobile browser in India, UC Browser has significantly helped make mobile internet more accessible to Indian users; thereby helping in the penetration of mobile internet and fulfilling its commitment towards this market. As this number of users continues to grow into 2014, UCWeb is poised to welcome these users to mobile internet.
UC Browser is also helping in mobile internet penetration in rural India through its data compression technology, data saving and faster browsing experience. According to IAMAI, the mobile internet users in rural India are expected to increase from 21 Million users in June 2013 to 27 Million by December 2013.
UC Browser leverages cloud technology to compress webpages and therefore speed up webpage loading to users.This process is a perfect remedy for network problems and greatly improves the overall mobile browsing experience.
Despite the less than desirable mobile network conditions, mobile internet users in India have been big on video consumption, as revealed by UC Browser’s statistics. UC Browser offers enhanced video feature coupled with powerful download management, hence making it a favourite venue for online video consumption in India.
UCWeb also increases accessibility and improves browsing experience by catering to local language demand and all kinds of phones of different specifications. Its ability to adapt to India’s unique environment is a main driving force behind the popularity of UC Browser.
An ecosystems that all partners can leverage in the ‘Golden Age’ ahead
UCWeb is not only focussing on improving its product for the users, but is also helping its business partners from the ecosystem that UC Browser has fostered. The foundation of the ecosystem is a user base of 400 million global users. In July 2013, UCWeb launched the Open Add-on Platform for Android. This platform encourages more third party developers to create a wide array of customized feature add-ons for UC Browser, bringing a more exciting and more personalized browsing experiences to users.
Cricbuzz.com, a must-visit destination for cricket fans, is one of UC Browser’s partners in this endeavour. By releasing a Cricbuzz add-on on the UC Browser Add-on Platform, Cricbuzz built up a new platform to stay connected with its audience, and reach the millions of UC Browser users.
UC Browser also helps network service operators and game providers in brand exposure and search engine optimization. 9game.com became a close business partner of UCWeb in early 2012, and it has seen a steady growth of traffic ever since. Now, it is one of the most popular gaming sites in India.
The coming Golden Age brings new opportunities in “smart” mobile e-commerce
According to IDC, smartphone sales in India have grown more than three-fold year-on-year to reach 12.8 million units in Q3 of 2013. Recently, Android has overtaken the long-ruling S40 as the No.1 mobile OS in India according to StatCounter, and it also became UC Browser’s largest platform in India in October.
As a powerful operating platform that can carry complex functions, games and apps, Android is set to drive mobile commerce to boom in India. In October, SAP AG announced a global study and it indicated that Indian consumers are leading the demand for mobile commerce services, with 97% of consumers asking for more mobile interactions with banks, telcos, retailers, utilities and other businesses. More than half of Indian consumers indulge in mobile purchases for entertainment services, games, and music downloads. The study echos with a research done by IAMAI which estimates that Indian mobile value added services (MVAS) market will expand 25% per year and reach US$9.5 billion in 2015.
India is considered a ‘mobile-first’ country, and lots of users, especially those from Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities, are accessinginternet via their mobile phones before PC. Even for such people, accessing and finding content is easy as they have preloaded local content on their mobile browsers already. The demand for localized mobile content is bound to increase sharply in 2014. In the past two years, UCWeb has gained enough local experience by making Indian office its second headquarters and adding Hindi language support to UC Browser, among others. Knowing well its users and the market, UC Browser will continue keeping up with the trend and boost online video, gaming and mobile commerce to take off in India, by helping more and more internet companies to grow.