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Yahoo reveals consumer 2009 mobile search habits

Consumers? search habits are different across PC and mobile, according to Yahoo Inc.

In 2009, one in four Americans used a mobile device to access the Internet every month. That's roughly 77 million people looking to discover new things, stay connected and keep informed while on the go.

?Consumer use of Internet services on mobile devices is exploding and will continue to as mobile users turn to more sophisticated, Web-friendly devices in increasing numbers,? said Cory Pforzheimer, spokesman at Yahoo, Sunnyvale, CA.

?Users took their hunger for gossip, news, games and social networks from the desktop and continued it to their phones,? he said. ?People are turning to mobile in record numbers and want to stay connected and in-the-know regardless of if they?re at a PC or using a mobile phone.

?Over the past two years, we have seen the usage of our homepage grow by more than triple globally.?

As one of the leading Web brands on the mobile Internet in the U.S., Yahoo claims to reach more than 39 million unique users per month

The top 10 Yahoo mobile searches for 2009 are:

1. Megan Fox, 2. Mobile Games, 3. Michael Jackson, 4. Movies, 5. Rihanna , 6. Mail, 7. Lady Gaga , 8. NFL, 9. Ringtones, 10. iPhone.

According to Yahoo, June 25 redefined the mobile landscape.

Rumors spread like wildfire across the Web, mobile devices buzzed with texts, email and searches for Michael Jackson and news of his death.

There were more searches, in half a day, than any other event.

In June, mobile users searched for Michael 550 percent more than they had in May. As news (and scandal) emerged throughout the summer and fall, mobile users continued to look for MJ's siblings, the "Thriller" video and lyrics, and details on his final performance in the movie "This Is It."

Other stars were boosted to the top of search charts by gossip, rumor and innuendo.

Rihanna's public problems with ex-boyfriend Chris Brown threw her onto the mobile charts, with searches on her name increasing 6,000 percent in February.

Lady Gaga also saw an increase in searches when the rumor about her DNA makeup arose. 

?When it comes to breaking news, celebrities and pop culture, mobile searchers frequently search for same terms they do on the PC,? Mr. Pforzheimer said. 

While consumer?s search habits are similar across PC and mobile, there are several terms in the top 10 that are mobile-specific and show how people use the mobile medium differently than they do on the PC. 

Mobile Games (No. 2), Movies (No. 4), Mail (No. 6), Ringtones (No. 9) and iPhone (No. 10) were the most popular mobile-specific terms that people searched for. 

?Mobile gaming is a rapidly developing industry as consumers look to their mobile device to keep them entertained,? Mr. Pforzheimer said.  "The same is true with ringtones ? people want to customize their mobile experience.

?Searches for movies spike towards the end of the week (Thursday through Saturday) as people use their mobile device to connect them to things in the real world ? finding show times, watching movie trailers, evaluating what they want to see and how they want to spend their money,? he said.