U.S. Mobile Map Audience Grows 39 Percent in Past Year as Fixed-Internet Map Audience Softens Slightly

Smartphone Adoption Leads to Doubling of Map App Audience

RESTON, VA, July 18, 2011 - Comscore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR), a leader in measuring the digital world, today released results of a U.S. study of mobile map usage based on data from its Comscore MobiLens service. The study found that 48 million mobile users accessed maps on their mobile device during the three month average period ending May 2011, an increase of 39 percent from the previous year, driven in large part by the increase in smartphone adoption. The study found that map usage via mobile applications was the primary access point for smartphone owners as the map app audience doubled in size over the past year.

More Americans Turning to Mobile to Find Their Way

More than 48 million mobile users accessed maps on their device in May, marking an increase of 39 percent from the previous year. A comparative look at map usage among fixed-Internet users (i.e. accessing from a home or work computer) found that map visitation saw a slight decline in total audience in May 2011 versus the previous year, dipping 2 percent, while still maintaining a substantially larger audience of 93.8 million visitors.

“The strong growth in mobile map usage and flattening of desktop map usage is indicative of broader behavioral shifts being wrought by smartphones,” said Mark Donovan, Comscore senior vice president of mobile. “For years, consumers have been able to check directions on their desktop computers prior to leaving their home or office, now smartphones allow people to skip this step and access maps on the go, as they need them, showing off one of the most powerful capabilities of mobile — just-in-time-information.”

Map Category Audience for Mobile and Fixed Internet Access
Source: Comscore, Inc.

Total Audience (000)



% Change

Fixed Internet*: Map Access




All Mobile**: Map Access




*Source: Comscore MMX, May 2011 vs. May 2010, Total U.S. Audience Home/Work Locations
**Source: Comscore MobiLens, 3 month average ending May 2011 vs. May 2010, Total U.S. Mobile Audience Age 13+

Map App Audience Doubles

The number of smartphone map users (which accounted for 4 out of every 5 mobile map users) reached 38.2 million in May, an increase of 75 percent from the previous year and outpacing the total smartphone audience growth of 57 percent. Applications represented the primary access point for approximately two-thirds of smartphone map users (up 98 percent), while browser map access was about half as popular as apps and grew at half the rate.

Smartphone Browser and Application Usage for Map Access
3 Month Avg. Ending May 2011 vs. 3 Month Avg. Ending May 2010
Total U.S. Age 13+
Source: Comscore MobiLens

Total Audience (000)



% Change

Total Smartphone




Accessed Maps via Application




Accessed Maps via Mobile Browser




Americans Most Likely to Access Mobile Maps from Vehicles

Among all mobile users (smartphone and feature phone) who accessed maps on their mobile devices, 88.9 percent did so from a car or other vehicle, with 16.9 percent doing so while walking, running or biking, and 13.6 percent while using public transit. The most utilized types of maps were graphical maps with turn-by-turn directions (64.0 percent of mobile maps users), followed by 48.3 percent using a graphical map without turn-by-turn directions and 46.0 percent using turn-by-turn directions without a graphical map.

Mobile Map Usage by Mode of Travel and Type of Map for Total Mobile Audience (Smartphone and Feature Phone)
3 Month Avg. Ending May 2011
Total U.S. Age 13+
Source: Comscore MobiLens

% of Mobile Users Accessing Maps

Mode of Travel Used or Intended to be Used When Accessing Maps:*


Driving or riding in a car or other vehicle


Walking or running or biking


Using public transit


Type of Map or Directions Accessed: *

Graphical map with turn by turn directions


Graphical map without turn by turn directions


Turn by turn directions without graphical map


*Percentages will not sum to 100% as respondents may select more than one mode of transport or type of map accessed

About Comscore

Comscore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR) is a global leader in measuring the digital world and preferred source of digital business analytics. For more information please visit www.comscore.com/companyinfo

Sarah Radwanick
Director, Regional Product Marketing
Comscore, Inc.
+44 (0) 20 7099 1784