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Global Moxie specializes in mobile design strategy and user experience for a multiscreen world. We offer consulting services, training, and product-invention workshops to help creative organizations build tapworthy mobile apps and effective websites. We're based in Brooklyn, NY. Learn more.

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Books by Josh Clark

Tapworthy: Designing Great iPhone Apps

Best iPhone Apps: The Guide for Discriminating Downloaders

iWork ’09: The Mising Manual

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Over Half the People on Earth Have a Mobile Phone

Posted Apr 17, 2011

Tomi Ahonen shared his snapshot of global mobile stats this week and cast his eye toward the end of 2011, too. The whole thing is worth a look, but here are a few eye-popping nuggets to get you started:

  • There are 7 billion people on earth, but already an astounding 5.3 billion mobile phone accounts (around 3.9 billion unique mobile phone owners, or 55.7% population, with about 4.6 billion individual phones).

  • Only 17% of phones are smartphones, but even the feature phones have a pretty impressive set of basic functionality: 96% of all phones have at least a basic browser (WAP or HTML); 94% have color screen; 77% have a camera. (This means that more than 3.5 billion cameraphones are in use; literally half the world's population has a camera in their pocket.)

  • 71% of all phones have a HTML web browser (not just WAP), or 3.3 billion. That's almost three times the number of internet-connected PCs.

  • 1.8 billion Nokia phones are in the wild, which means 27% of the world's population has a Nokia phone in their pocket.

  • SMS text use is approaching global literacy rates. It literally can't get bigger. 85% of Europe mobile subscribers are active SMS users. In China it's 90%. USA is past 74%. By end of year, we'll see 4.5 billion active SMS users, "the most widely used data application on the planet." Domino's Pizza and Coca Cola are aggressively using the platform for marketing.

More: Communities Dominate Brands: Some Milestones We Will See This Year in Mobile Statistics

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“I’m blown away by Josh Clark’s deep understanding of the iPhone user experience.”
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“It’s rare to find a person like Josh Clark who speaks so intently to the topic of interface design and mobile devices.”
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