BEIJING — China has 710 million Internet users as of June, accounting for 51.7 percent of its total population, exceeding the global average by 3.1 percent, according to an official report released by the China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC) on Aug 3.
China gained about 21.3 million new web users in the first half of 2016, an increase of 1.3 percent compared with figures from the end of 2015, the report said.
The report noted that 191 million people, almost 27 percent total Internet users were from rural areas, marking a huge gap of 35.6 percent in the Internet penetration rate between urban and rural areas.
The number of people surfing the Internet via smartphones reached 656 million, about 92.5 percent of Internet users, the report said.
On average, web users spent 3.8 hours per day on the Internet, an increase of 0.3 hours from 2015.
According to the report, almost 92 percent of mobile Internet users in China use instant messaging apps and almost 80 percent use news apps. Mobile search, online music and videos, as well as online payments were also among the most popular mobile applications.
Users of food take-out apps rose over 40 percent in the first six months of 2016, with 146 million Chinese using their phone to order food.