Mobiles Trump Pcs In Internet Use

Bandar Seri Begawan - Bruneians are opting the use of mobile phones as a means to access the Internet nowadays due to its portability, size and user friendliness that allows mobile phone users to frequently go online without the use of a computer.
"The ease of the use of Internet through a mobile phone could be a factor that has caused a rise in its popularity," said Norhairezan Ahmad, Statistics Officer at the Authority for Info-communications Technology Industry (AiTi).
According an online article from MIS Asia, Brunei is among the 10 Southeast Asian countries (Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore, Cambodia, Thailand, Laos and Myanmar) that use Opera Mini as an Internet browser on their mobile phones. Brunei has even ranked first place among the 10 countries in the number of page views per user. The report noted that each user in Brunei browses 987 webpages on average each month through their mobile phones.
"Opera Mini is mostly used with Nokia mobile phones and Bruneians are more comfortable and familiar with that (brand)," said Norshahrul Nizam Othman, Manager of the Infrastructure and Technology Department at AiTi."So that's probably why when they do these calculations, they can see that the Brunei Internet traffic is actually using this browser," he said.
According to, a ranking rating tool, social networking site Facebook is number one out of a hundred websites that is most viewed by people in Brunei.Norshahrul Nizam told The Brunei Times that this could possibly be a general outlook which would include both PC and mobile phone Internet access.
"It's not surprising to see Facebook or Google being on top of these lists because it's common all around the world and not just in Brunei. This can be associated with young people who are often seen holding mobile phones wherever they go."
Norshahrul Nizam said, "We are not quite comfortable saying that Brunei is number one out of the top 10 countries as we usually fall under third or fourth place compared to Singapore or Malaysia, but one factor that might have possibly put us in that place are the price rates.
"He may have cheaper price rates with the overall package price our telephone companies provide us with, but if we were to compare them with other countries in the region, either by use of duration or the amount of information transferred, we are still quite expensive."
Hafizah Ariffin, a 19-year-old part-time student said, 9 prefer using my handphone to go online because I take my handphone wherever I go and everytime I need info or help on my college assignments, I can easily 'Google' it."
When asked about the Opera Mini browser, she said, "I've never used it because I prefer using Motorola. I think they use something called 'WebAccess' and as long as I can access Facebook with it, then I'm satisfied."
Mainly use the Internet on my handphone to get sports updates when I don't have the time to watch the marches," said Wall Chard, a business supervisor.
"I use a Sony Ericsson and subscribe to B-Mobile and so far they've served as a good combo for a fast connection. I'm always on the go because of my job and never really have time to sit down, so that really defeats the purpose of me using a laptop when I don't even have time for it to start up."
Joey Toh, who works at a computer supplies store, finds accessing the Internet via his mobile phone more convenient and accessible.
He said, "Even though I work in a computer store, I'd still use my handphone to go online. I can quickly chat with a friend on eBuddy just by typing a few words then quickly hide it in my pocket if a customer needs me."
When asked about the pricing, he said, "It's pretty cheap actually. With the pay I receive, I can't even afford to pay for the 'eSpeed' or 'Go Broadband' plan. But with five cents per megabyte, I can just pay as I go and I won't have to worry about wasting money if I don't use it because I could use the credit for testing or calling my friends."
According to AiTi, the statistics of Internet usage through mobile phones in Brunei have not been compiled as of yet, but will be available next month. -- Courtesy of The Brunei Times

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