comScore today released a study on mobile map usage based on data from its comScore MobiLens service, indicating that 14 percent of mobile users in the U.S. accessed maps on their mobile devices in April 2010, as the mobile map audience reached 33.5 million users- up 44 percent from the previous year.
Interestingly, the study suggests that more people access maps via mobile apps than via browser. For the three month period ending April 2010, 26 percent of smartphone users accessed maps via applications, while 19 percent accessed maps via browser. In comparison, just 2 percent of feature phone users accessed maps via applications, with 4 percent doing so via browser. Smartphone users drove growth in both application and browser map usage with app access nearly tripling to 12.7 million smartphone users, while browser map access surged 93 percent to nearly 9 million smartphone users.
“People are increasingly turning to their mobile phone for maps and directions when on the go,” said Mark Donovan, comScore senior vice president of mobile. “With summer travel season upon us, we expect even more mobile users to access both maps and location-based local search to help them navigate and find geographically relevant information.”