Japanese web users increased in number from 19.4 million to 32.6m in the year to February, according to computer publisher Impress.

Behind the figures lies an enormous leap in surfing via internet-enabled mobile phones – 6.5m people accessed the web exclusively through their phones in February, over two hundred times the 30,000 twelve months earlier. Following heavy demand for NTT DoCoMo’s ‘i-mode’ models, Japan is now the world leader in wireless access.

Another group of users experiencing strong growth is women – 39% of surfers were female, compared with 28% the year before.

Although the figures are tiny, there was also a rise in web access among the over-70s, who accounted for 1.6% of users, over double the 0.6% in 2000.

News source: Wall Street Journal