To clarify, it’s actually the interest in sharks that drives mobile device traffic – not the beasts themselves. Although sharks are some of the planet’s most mobile creatures, they lag in spending on tech gadgets due to a lack in household income and thumbs.
As for human internet users, a rapidly growing segment of the 500,000 annual visitors to the Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk, CT prepare for their visit using their smart phones and tablets — checking-in on Four Square, looking up IMAX movie show times and posting sea turtle photos to Facebook.
Earlier this year, the aquarium launched a mobile website. Not only does the site better serve their visitors, but the aquarium can now accurately forecast the daily attendance based on the previous two days’ website traffic, as folks plan by exploring exhibit updates and download driving directions.
Service Providers continue to build their networks to support much more of this type of traffic, as the tablet ushers in a new level of mobile functionality. Gartner estimates global tablet sales will reach 63.6 million units in 2011, up from 17.6 million consumer tablets sold in 2010.