When the iPhone was introduced back in 2007 Steve Jobs made it known that he thought the phone’s best feature was the ability to browse the internet in its entirety. To his credit it was the first device to even come close. As Jobs’ idol, Bob Dylan sang, “The times they are a changing”.

The Bango Blog offers some insight regarding their newest web browsing statistics that show a decline in web traffic as it relates to content viewed from the iPhone. Should the decline be attributed to the influx in platforms that offer the same style of browsing? Some would argue that systems like Android offer a more comprehensive experience strictly due to their support of Flash…

Bango CEO, Ray Andersen, made the following comments regarding the data:

Even with the advent of Apples new iAd platform and Google’s acquisition of AdMob, BlackBerry still represents the best volume opportunity for mobile advertising in the USA. Apple appears to be losing ground to the latest Android handsets from HTC, Sony Ericsson, Motorola and Samsung, showing the slowest quarterly growth in web browsing.

I think the answer might rest directly within the realm of Apple themselves. The iPhone browser, Safari, doesn’t allow users to natively download content directly to their iDevice. If you wish to view such content you’ll have to settle for the streaming experience, unless of course you download an app to circumvent the process. That brings me to the next possible explanation.

The coined phrase of “There’s an app for that” is more than just a pop culture expression. Jobs vision of allowing the user to dictate the future capabilities of iDevices is just as responsible for the downtrend of web browsing as the denial of Flash or using alternative web platforms (such as Firefox).

If you want to check your eBay account you have an app for that. Want to view your PayPal funds? There’s an app for that. Want to check your Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Foursquare, Gowalla, or Yelp stats? Yeah, you guessed it. The redirecting of the users method of browsing via the App Store isn’t a coincidence. It’s money in the bank.

While the iPhone was touted as being the way to see the web on the go, many of the above sites I listed (if not all of them) will send you to the dreaded mobile version of the site if you try to view them through Safari. This annoying little truth is only avoided by having to switch to full-site mode which is usually located at the bottom of the webpage. Sure it’s easy but it shouldn’t be necessary on a device that was introduced as being the solution for such inconveniences.

So what is your experience? Do you normally use an app for the viewing you used to perform through a browser? Apple certainly hopes you do. Let us know your opinions in the bumper to bumper traffic zone known as the comment section.

  • Dracossaint

    This is very true and insightful ,it’s not a suprise best advice is to compare how many people use that app (in
    iPhone facebook example 10k users) and ect what should be measured is active data retrival to check browsing

    • Shadow

      Except that everybody who uses facebook and twitter on the android also have apps for that which are arguably better than my iPhone version.

  • Kevin

    There should be a jailbreak tweak for that

  • NYPD

    I hardly use safari, I prefer atomic.
    That said, I mainly use PulseNews, direct apps (fb, eBay, etc), and play games rather than a mobile browser in general. The apps keep improving so web browsing has gone on the wayside.

  • Kerstin

    @Ethan : Insightful, and pretty enlightening thinking.

    @sebastian : (talking of annoying web-app access to sites) is there any chance you can default your web app interface to head to the main news page? .. It’s sooo frustrating to checkbon, see an interesting headline, then have the site redirect itself to the last read article instead. Especially in 3G data mode, it’s just a huge irritation to be redirected all the time when you wanted the news page to be the bookmark. Love this site otherwise (why else would I have added the bookmark to home screen? 😉 )

  • kirk

    HTML5 can change this, if more websites would use it. The HTML5 version of youtube has single handedly got me to stop using the youtube app.

  • James

    I still use the web versions of a lot of them. I use perfect browser and have the desktop rendering turned on and also have the browser selector plugin installed , so any links I click on automatically use perfect browser instead of safari, so I get zero safari and also zero ‘lite’ web versions of the sites.

    • Z

      Do you mean browser changer? Or is there another plugin?

  • Burge

    There was a tweak for this and I’ve been trying to find it for the last week I can not remember it’s name ! . It make sites beleave that you are at a computer not on a phone.

    • Willsrx

      Would that be user agent faker? It works great but you shouldn’t have to jailbreak for this simple feature.

  • Burge

    Might be, like I said carnt think on name

    • Burge

      That is it. When it first came out there was no toggles it was just a install. That’s why it didn’t look right to me. Thanks for that Willsrx

      • Willsrx

        Noprob. Your right, it’s initial release needed to be changed manually which was a pain ^in the rear. Now the toggles make it much simpler to setup.

  • Z

    I have a question to all that use SDM. Is there any way to have SDM handle downloads in a third party browser?

  • Mac

    A few features of iPhone 5:

    Thinner! With shiny glass back piece – 9.3 mm thick.

    Face recognition

    Face Time (Video Chat) access on 3G AND 4G

    Custom SMS tones

    Custom E-mail alerts with ability to assign different tones to each email address

    A new, sleeker body design.

    OLED screen.

    Scratch proof and shatter proof screen

    Wireless sync with iTunes

    32G (basic) and 64G of memory. You’re sure to never run out.

    Extended battery life = 14 hours talk time on 3G and 7 hours on 4G. Standby 600 hours.

    Hi Definition audio.

    Messaging indicator light.

    True GPS built in.


    • Shadow

      Oh wait… That’s the Android… Crap! 😉

  • Stephen Phillips

    Very interesting and spot-on. The primary reason my browser use has dropped significantly is the use of RSS feeds and RSS apps. Much easier to get all my news from one App than surf around multiple sites.

  • Mac

    Plus an sd card reader
    IR for any remote
    water proof and water camera
    Download and save files
    wireless printing

    • Mac

      Cloud firmware and features
      Wireless battery charging(wireless
      energy transfer no more wires)

      • Actually the way Palm has integrated wireless charging is as good as it gets. Wireless charging by sending the initial energy from the socket to dock is physically impossible. Our cellular devices require voltage the equivalent of that of a microwave. Imagine trying to send that type of wave length through the air; not to mention it’s impossible to direct those waves as metal, the only alloy varied in composites enough to direct various wavelengths, is the same alloy that distorts it’s frequencies among other things.

      • Mac

        Built in tv you can watch live tv
        talkie walkie works on channels
        cloud back up system

  • @Mac Well thought. But knowing Apple, they’ll take it a few specs at a time.

    • Mac

      Your right on the money
      may it s going to take them six
      years to have all this features so
      6years times $199=$1200
      so why don’t they put all this features
      and sell the iPhone for $1200 that way
      make more money in short time.

      • Heh, for me to pay $1200 for an iphone, the scenario would have to be better than Gizmodos.

  • Oh and sorry @Ethan for staying of topic. A main reason for iphone users’ data decreasing is that At&t are limiting plans now. They are no longer unlimited for new contract users. All current iphone holders will keep their data plans; however, those whose contract expires or those who want to upgrade to an iphone 4 will be forced into a new contract with that data limit.


      if you have a unlimited data plan you still keep it as long as you don’t leave it I upgraded to Iphone 4 and still have unlimited data just don’t upgrade via apple go to a AT&T store

    • Shadow

      This reason I can believe! Data caps… 🙁

  • @JOEYOGC Thanks for the correction!

  • Mac

    Hi sebastien and Ethan
    sorry brothers I m out of topic big time

  • Burge

    Q, is this just in the US ? Or world wide ? Because that limited data plan doesn’t affect me in the UK

  • Sb

    Just put /home after the website and it doesnt go to mobile mode. Also something else that sucks is that we got the apps great. But i open an email and it opens it up in safari not the app. So wats the use