India flag

AH Primetime: KPCB Internet Trends Show India As A Top Mobilized Country

June 3, 2015 - Written By Cory McNutt

When it comes to selling mobile phones and apps, India is the place to be – their mobile phone usage and desire to use the internet is one of the fastest growing regions in the world as well as products associated with the Mobile enterprise.  China is another hotbed, but there is some real competition going on with prices so low, one can only make money on volume and added services.  Growth in a saturated market like the US and Europe does not lend itself to making sales like you can in India, where analyst are predicting that over 300 million mobile phones could be sold in 2015.

The country of India has embraced the internet and smartphone and as their infrastructure grows, so will their usage.  Usually, the government organizations, businesses, health care facilities and educational institutions demand and get the first internet access, but eventually it will spread to the private sectors.  For some reason, the huge population of India really enjoys using their mobile devices and embracing mobile banking and e-commerce at a tremendous rate.  A Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers (KPCB) took a look at Mobile activities during 2014 in India and below are some charts of their findings….and also a write-up.

The first graph shows just how much the internet usage has grown in the US, China and India since 1990 for the US and then about 1997 for India and China.  India started out slow, but then in 2008-2009, it started to rise and from 2011-2014 it has started to rise very quickly and they are predicting its continued fast growth over the next few years as the US starts to level off.  India has 232 million Internet users and had growth of 37-percent year-over-year, becoming the third largest market.  India was the top country in internet user adds-per-year with 63 million added in 2014.

India is often the number one or number two in MAU (Monthly Active Users) for global internet leaders.  Such is the case with Facebook, India is the second largest market of MAUs…same with LinkedIn.  When it comes to WhatsApp, India is their largest market with Twitter listing India as their fastest growing market.  India represents 7-percent of YouTube’s global users.  Back in July 2014 Amazon announced an additional $2 billion will be invested in India.  The first quarter of 2015 show the top ten apps in use in India, from number one to number 10: WhatsApp, Facebook, MX Player, Messenger, Truecaller, Candy Crush Saga, Opera Mini, Hike Messenger, Subway Surfers and Cricbuzz Cricket Scores & News.

The findings also show how India’s large population is using the internet and as on May 2015, 65-percent of their internet traffic is from mobile devices, second only to Nigeria with a whopping 76-percent mobile internet traffic.  India tops the list of those countries that do e-commerce via mobile access – they do over 40-percent as compared to the US at only 15-percent.  You have to consider that availability of other devices for e-commerce, such as in the US many people use their laptop or PC to ‘shop online’ rather than our mobile devices.  In a country such as India, where the mobile phone is all many families own, they would naturally use their mobile device to make online purchases.

The India e-commerce leaders from the second quarter 2013 to the first quarter of 2015 are Snapdeal from India, Flipkart from India, Alibaba from China, JD.com from China and eBay, which is global.  Possibly, because of so many online sales, there are over 90 million wallet users in India, which is a 17-percent growth rate year-over-year.  The top wallets are: Paytm, MobiKwik, ItzCash, Airtel, Oxigen, Vodafone and Citrus.  The more e-commerce is done in India, the higher the mobile wallet usage will become.  We can look for continued growth in India for the foreseeable future at their infrastructure continues to grow and more 4G LTE smartphones are sold…it is truly a seller’s market.