EBay has teamed up with O2 owner Telefonica to pre-load the marketplace’s shopping app on its customers’ handsets.

An eBay mobile app will come pre-installed as standard on most smartphone devices provided by O2 in the UK from later this year.

Last year eBay generated nearly $2bn sales through mobile phones in 2010. It expects to double this to $4bn in 2011.

The UK has been the fastest adopter of m-commerce, with more Brits shopping through the eBay app than anywhere else in Europe. At the height of the Christmas shopping season, 10% of the auction site’s UK sales came via mobile.

EBay vice president of mobile Steve Yankovich said: “With smart phones now outselling PCs, the future of shopping for our customers is mobile. O2’s 22 million customers will find it even easier to access the world’s largest marketplace wherever they are.

“We will continue to invest in mobile technology and work with partners to extend our market-leading position in m-commerce, and to give customers the shopping experience they demand.”