The enterprise “gets” mobile now. Maybe there is no great surprise in that. After all, the smartphone really was adopted first by corporate executives in need of portable computing. The general consumer was not the one buying those clunky and early Windows-driven, antenna-popping bricks of yesteryear. And so mobility is not news to the major corporation. Among these executives, 44% said they already have an enterprise-wide mobility strategy, and another 43% say theirs is directed at specific business units. Only 11% admit they are still working on a strategy, while a mere 2% consider mobility irrelevant to their company.
But what is really interesting about the new Accenture mobility study of 1,475 executives across 10 industries in 14 countries? These guys say their companies are not only “getting mobile,” in that sort of generalized “yeah-we-have-our-eye-on-it way.” This time they are telling researchers that their interest in emerging mobile platforms is detailed and deep. What stands out to me in this report is how mobility in all its aspects, especially technologies that also will be driving mobile marketing, are of keen interest for adoption within the company.
Mobility is bigger than Big Data, that other trending buzzword of the moment, with 77% of respondents saying mobility is among their top five priorities, while analytics follows at 72%. Add to that: connected devices are third with 65%, above cloud computing (62%) and social (61%)
FRAMINGHAM, Mass. February 26, 2014 – According to a new mobile phone forecast from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, worldwide smartphone shipments will slow to 8.3% annual growth in 2017 and 6.2% in 2018. Annual smartphone volume in 2013 surpassed 1 billion units for the first time, accounting for 39.2% growth over 2012. In the coming year, IDC expects mature markets like North America and Europe to drop to single digits, and Japan might contract slightly. Despite the high growth expected in many emerging markets, 2014 will mark the year smartphone growth drops more significantly than ever before. 2014 volumes are expected to be 1.2 billion, up from 1 billion in 2013, representing 19.3% year-over-year growth.
“In North America we see more than 200 million smartphones in active use, not to mention the number of feature phones still being used,” said Ryan Reith, Program Director with IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker. “2014 will be an enormous transition year for the smartphone market. Not only will growth decline more than ever before, but the driving forces behind smartphone adoption are changing. New markets for growth bring different rules to play by and ‘premium’ will not be a major factor in the regions driving overall market growth.”
As mature markets become saturated and worldwide growth slows, service providers and device manufacturers are seeking opportunities to move hardware wherever they can. The result is rapidly declining price points, creating challenging environments in which to turn a profit. Worldwide smartphone average selling price (ASP) was $335 in 2013, and is expected to drop to $260 by 2018.
Mobile advertising is twice as effective as desktop among the general population and up to four times more effective when targeted towards affluent consumers, a global study from BBC World News has claimed.
The study also found that more affluent consumers around the globe were more connected to the internet via mobile than less affluent users, with 39 per cent accessing the internet via mobile devices at least once and hour – 18 per cent higher than the general population.
In addition, more than half (51 per cent) of affluence consumers use their mobile phone for business, compared to 40 per cent of the population. A third of affluent consumers agreed that brands need to be on mobile if they wish to be considered modern and dynamic – 15 per cent more than the general population.
Furthermore, high income earners were found to be marginally more positive towards advertising on mobile (19 per cent) ahead of desktop (18 per cent). For sites where content is free, 41 per cent said they would be happy to see ads on mobile websites.
For Americans, cell phones are omnipresent. Many check their Facebook page multiple times a day. Access to WiFi is not a problem for most. Technology use in the U.S. has risen over the past two decades as products and service became more sophisticated and affordable.
A new Pew Research Center report provides a fascinating snapshot of how, within a remarkably short time, some developing nations are catching up – especially when it comes to mobile devices and social media. In other cases, the data are a reminder that some countries still have a technology profile that is 20th Century. Here are some of the key comparisons.
Cell phone and smartphone usage
Recent surveys at Pew Research show that 91% of American adults have cell phones and that smartphones have overtaken simpler “feature phones” in popularity. The adoption pattern of cell phones in emerging countries like Turkey, Lebanon and Chile do not look very different from America. China and Russia have even nudged ahead of the U.S. But other countries lag. In Pakistan, slightly more than half have a cell phone and in Mexico, it’s just above six-in-ten. Still, the rapid rise in cell phone ownership is quite breathtaking and might be due to the fact that many nations, unlike the U.S., have skipped landline technology and moved straight to mobile.
Global smartwatch shipments reached 1.9 million units last year, and Google’s Android mobile OS captured a 61 percent market share, according to Strategy Analytics.
The nascent smartwatch market is starting to take shape and there is huge opportunity for growth. In 2012 vendors only shipped a few hundred thousand units, said Neil Mawston, executive director at Strategy Analytics.
Samsung’s Galaxy Gear (pictured at top) helped Android achieve its dominant market share. The device is being promoted heavily in the U.S., U.K. and South Korea, the market research company said.
Android has several challengers in the smartwatch space, like Firefox and Pebble OS, but none of them are a major threat at this stage because of their relatively limited ecosystems and modest retail presence.
FRAMINGHAM, Mass.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The smartphone market passed an important milestone in 2013 when worldwide shipments surpassed the 1 billion mark for the first time, driven by continued momentum from Android and iOS. According to the International Data Corporation (IDC)Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, Android and iOS accounted for 95.7% of all smartphone shipments in the fourth quarter of 2013 (4Q13), and for 93.8% of all smartphone shipments for the year. This marked a 4.5-point increase from the 91.2% share that the two platforms shared in 4Q12, and a 6.1-point increase from the 87.7% share they had in 2012.
“In 2013 we saw the sub-$200 smartphone market grow to 42.6% of global volume, or 430 million units”
“Clearly, there was strong end-user demand for both Android and iOS products during the quarter and the year,” says Ramon Llamas, Research Manager with IDC’s Mobile Phone team. “What stands out are the different routes Android and Apple took to meet this demand. Android relied on its long list of OEM partners, a broad and deep collection of devices, and price points that appealed to nearly every market segment. Apple’s iOS, on the other hand, relied on nearly the opposite approach: a limited selection of Apple-only devices, whose prices trended higher than most. Despite these differences, both platforms found a warm reception to their respective user experiences and selection of mobile applications.”
While smartphone market growth remained strong in 2013, it should be noted that the era of double-digit annual growth has only a few years remaining. In the meantime, handset vendors are doing all they can to capture demand while it is still present. Worldwide smartphone marketing campaigns continue to stay focused on flagship devices like the iPhone 5S, Galaxy Note 3, and the HTC One, yet research shows that consumer buying is rapidly shifting toward products with significantly lower price points.
The words “International Data Group” conjure up an old era of computers that took up entire rooms with data-punching experts wearing white coats. And it’s not a coincidence that the International Data Group, or IDG, was founded in 1964 near Boston. But what started as a research firm turned into a series of tech trade publications (e.g. InfoWorld, Computerworld), consumer tech pubs (e.g. PC World, MacWorld), and events that spanned the globe. Now, the private company is looking toward a data-driven, mobile future.
“I think mobile will be fascinating in two areas: How do you gate that content and use that channel to deepen that relationship with readers? And from the advertiser’s perspective and with responsive design, how are you going to leverage video and native ads on those platforms?” said Michael Friedenberg, who ascended to IDG CEO last summer, and spoke to me recently via Skype.
IDG has been slowly moving its U.S. publications from print to digital, moving InfoWorld in 2009and more recently PC World went online-only, with an emphasis on charging annual subscriptions for tablet editions. While newer tech blogs such as TechCrunch and Engadget have gained prominence — and borrowed from IDG’s playbook of mixing content with events and research — IDG continues to plug away quietly. The company has turned its focus to programmatic ad sales with its Tech Media Exchange, and continues its global ambitions by focusing on the emerging MINT (Mexico, Indonesia, Nigeria, Turkey) area.
While many people wrote off tech trade publications as obsolete in the digital era, IDG continues to expand, diversify and find new ways to serve the tech industry.
Below is an edited version of my interview with Friedenberg, with audio clips for some of his answers.
Singapore and Hong Kong, February 13, 2014 – After 9 consecutive quarters of explosive growth, which propelled China into the top smartphone market in the world, the China smartphone market experience its first slowdown in 2013 Q4.
According to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Asia/Pacific Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, shipped 90.8 million units compared to 94.8 million in 2013 Q3, declining by 4.3% quarter on quarter (see Figure 1). Several factors drove this stumble – for one, China Mobile’s 4G TD-LTE network went live on December 18, translating into supplies of 4G handsets not able to reach the market fully until 2014 Q1. The increasing popularity of phablets and channel inventory also played a role, whereby operators cut phone subsidies on phones with smaller screens, triggering distribution channels looking to clear out those stocks.
“The world has increasingly looked to China as the powerhouse to propel the world’s smartphone growth and this is the first hiccup we’ve seen in an otherwise stellar growth path,” says Melissa Chau, Senior Research Manager with IDC Asia/Pacific’s Client Devices team.
“There will certainly be future drivers to unlock further smartphone growth in China, as Apple demonstrated with its China Mobile tie-up in January, and the massive device migration to come of phones only supporting 2G and 3G networks to devices supporting 4G networks. However, we are now starting to see a market that is becoming less about capturing the low-hanging fruit of first time smartphone users and moving into the more laborious process of convincing existing users why they should upgrade to this year’s model”
Looking ahead at the prospects for the Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan) region, with mature Asia/Pacific markets like already having hit market saturation and China growth facing more moderate increases, two trends will become more prominent.
The mobile economy is growing at a faster rate than previously expected while also showing signs of maturity, meaning there is still significant upside potential for companies in core sectors even as challenges multiply, according to a new report from Yankee Group.
The mobile economy will be valued at $3.1 trillion by 2017, which is $200 million more than Yankee Group forecasted in Oct. 2012. The quick ramp up will ensure that mobile remains the preeminent driver of technology growth for the foreseeable future, meaning all companies will need to adapt and embrace the opportunity or risk getting left behind.
“It’s important to look at a healthy cross-section of trends and metrics to really understand that we are still on the on-ramp of the mobility revolution,” said Rich Karpinski, senior analyst at Yankee Group, Boston, and co-author of the report.
“There is plenty of room for opportunity and growth, even as some markets, for instance, the U.S. mobile operator market reaching 50 percent cross-over point for data revenues, reach relative maturity,” he said.
The smartphone market’s been kind of a mess lately.
Between Apple’s big iPhone shortfall, the slowdown at Samsung and the financial messes at HTC, BlackBerry and Motorola, there just hasn’t been much good news out there.
If that sounds depressing, then stop reading now because the tablet market looks like it just hit the skids, too.
Before we go further, let’s remember that we’re dealing with a single data point here, so take any associated doom-and-gloom forecasts you may hear with a grain of salt.
Let’s get to it.
So Wednesday morning, our friends at IDC reported that the tablet market grew by just 28.2 percent in Q4.
IDC filled us in on the problems:
“It’s becoming increasingly clear that markets such as the US are reaching high levels of consumer saturation, and while emerging markets continue to show strong growth, this has not been enough to sustain the dramatic worldwide growth rates of years past,” said Tom Mainelli, Research Director, Tablets, at IDC. “We expect commercial purchases of tablets to continue to accelerate in mature markets, but softness in the consumer segment — brought about by high penetration rates and increased competition for the consumer dollar — point to a more challenging environment for tablets in 2014 and beyond.”