As the use of mobile devices continues to climb, the use of dedicated apps is also increasing — but is this a natural evolution, or should we be worried about apps winning and the open web losing? Chris Dixon, a partner with venture-capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, argues in a recent blog post that we should be concerned, because it is creating a future in which the web becomes a “niche product,” and the dominant environment is one of proprietary walled gardens run by a couple of web giants — and that this is bad for innovation.
Dixon’s evidence consists in part of two recent charts: one is from the web analytics company comScore, and shows that mobile usage has overtaken desktop usage — an event that occurred in January of this year. The second chart is from Flurry, which tracks app usage, and it shows that apps account for the vast majority of time spent vs. the mobile web, an amount that Flurry says is still growing. I’ve combined the two charts into one (somewhat ugly) graphic below:
If apps are winning, is the web losing?
The implication of all this is obvious, says Dixon. Mobile is the future, and what wins on mobile will win the internet — and “right now, apps are winning and the web is losing.” Not only that, but Dixon argues that the problem is likely to get worse, as more companies realize that an app gives them much more control over the user experience than a website. And with less and less investment in making the web experience better on mobile, it will continue to deteriorate, which in turn will push users even further towards the use of apps.
Framingham, MA – April 8, 2014 – International Data Corporation (IDC) today announced a new report, “United States Technology Buyer Forecast by Vertical: 2012 to 2017,” (Document # 247588) which examines technology spending by 12 buying segments and how this new technology purchasing behavior differs by 15 vertical industries. According to the new report, the business technology spending market will grow at 6.9% 5 year CAGR from $236.6 billion in 2012 to $330.7 billion by 2017, while enterprise IT grows slowly at a 1.9% 5 year CAGR from $213.0 billion to 233.5 billion over the same forecast period.
ClicktoTweet, “Business funded technology is expected to reach $275.2 b in 2014, accounting for 55% of total United States technology spending”
The new forecast quantifies how much money business areas including Accounting / Finance / Billing, Customer Service, Engineering, Architecture & Research, Human Resources, Industry Specific Operations, IT, Legal, Marketing, Other Horizontal Operations, Sales, Security and Risk and Supply Chain Management are spending on technology, and how this new paradigm differs by industry. Key findings include:
Business funded technology is expected to reach $275.2 billion in 2014, accounting for 55% of total technology spending. Industry specific operation is the largest business line, capturing approximately 45% of total business funded technology in 2014
Enterprise IT spending is growing only at a 1.8% 5 year CAGR, far below the overall 5 year technology CAGR of 4.6%. Only healthcare enterprise IT is growing faster (than overall technology spending.
Marketing is the fastest growing functional area, growing at a 5 year CAGR of 9.5%, reaching nearly $26 billion by 2017. The marketing function within the Communications and Media industry will spend the most on marketing in 2014, with the retail vertical growing the fastest over the forecast period (11.2% 5 year CAGR).
Business IT spending in the UAE is expected to increase 8.3% year on year in 2014 to total $4.63 billion, according to the latest figures released today by International Data Corporation. Referencing its recently released United Arab Emirates Vertical Markets 2013–2017 IT Spending Forecast (IDC#ZV11V), IDC anticipates healthy growth over the 2013–2017 forecast period as the governments of Abu Dhabi and Dubai continue to spend on upgrading the country’s infrastructure.
The public sector, which includes government, education, and healthcare organizations, will account for most of the business IT spending in 2014. Organizations in this vertical are predicted to invest $1.12 billion in IT and account for 24.3% of the spending, driven primarily by government-led initiatives to bring more public services to online and mobile platforms. Government-backed projects to increase the use of ICT in educational institutions, together with regulations in the healthcare sector that mandate a reduction in paper-based processes, are other major factors driving IT spending in this sector.
‘Combined Finance’ is the second-biggest vertical in the UAE with respect to business IT spending. Organizations in this vertical, which includes banking, insurance, and securities services providers, are predicted to invest $719.77 million in IT in 2014. The rapid expansion of branch and ATM networks, investments in online and mobile banking channels, and the need for better regulatory compliance are the primary drivers of ICT investments in the banking sector.
Consumer IT spending in the UAE is expected to account for 30.5% of total IT spending in 2014, though it will contract 8.4% year on year. This decrease in spending is a result of the stagnating PC market, which is being cannibalized by the growing demand for tablets.
The latest report from Flurry shows mobile users are spending the vast majority of their time with mobile apps, not with mobile Web browsers. So far in 2014, iOS and Android users have spent 86 percent of time with their devices using apps, up from 80 percent in 2013.
That certainly reflects how airlines, food delivery services, ride-sharing startups, and of course Facebook have embraced native apps over the mobile Web, to the delight of users. But the takeaway might be different for news organizations, whose apps still account for a rather small slice of time spent on mobile.
In January, Flurry reported that overall mobile use grew 115 percent in 2013, while the news and magazines category grew just 31 percent.
Cory Bergman of Breaking News has argued that news organizations need to offer apps with real utility in order to capture a bigger slice of the pie. As hewrote for Poynter, “simply extending a news organization’s current coverage into mobile isn’t enough.”
The value of apps like Breaking News and Circa, which aggregate information from all kinds of news sites and make use of push notifications on mobile devices, is that they offer features beyond what mobile websites do. That’s not the case for lots of other native news apps that merely mimic the Web experience.
To imagine how YouTube might one day become a money-spinner for content producers, consider the power of the irreverent video gamer and online star PewDiePie over his young, free-spending audience.
Each time the wildly popular YouTube impresario has donned Razer headphones in one of the many zany videos that feature him playing games, the product has sold out.
PewDiePie, who is not paid to endorse the brand, “really helped us in terms of getting traction on a much larger audience,” said Min-Liang Tan, chief executive of San Diego-based Razer, which makes gaming hardware. “It’s incredible that YouTube personalities are coming up … and I think it can only grow.”
PewDiePie’s uncanny trendsetting talent highlights the potential that content related to video games holds for Google Inc as it looks for ways to build its YouTube video platform into a powerful new revenue stream.
Advertisers and media companies are indeed already placing big bets on the likes of PewDiePie and others creating gaming-related content in a bid for the prime but underserved audience of 18- to 34-year-olds that devour video games.
Just last week Walt Disney Co agreed to fork over as much as $950 million to buy Maker Studios, one of YouTube’s largest production and distribution networks. PewDiePie, whose real name is Felix Kjellberg, is Maker’s biggest star.
The success of the 24-year-old, with his profanity laced improvisational videos, matches the explosive growth of video-game-based channels on YouTube. His channel has more than 25 million subscribers who can view his content for free, more than Beyonce’s and PresidentBarack Obama’s channels combined.
1) Be flexible, listen to the requirements of the market – When entering a new market, consider it a fresh start and gather data accordingly. Be ready to market your products in a different way or even prepare new products. A common problem Western businesses face is that they cannot (or will not) customize their offering as well as local competitors can.
2) Empower your marketing team – Marketers thrive on information. Make sure your marketing team not only has access to quantitative data, such as data from your web analytics platform and sales figures from the sales team, but also qualitative data, such as information about the quality of leads received by the sales team and feedback from clients.
3) Be prepared for a different sales process – The sales process in China is often very different, and the marketing efforts should be adjusted accordingly. Most notably, the sales process is likely to be longer, more complex and more relationship-driven. It’s important to be aware of these differences and be able to build them into the marketing model. Playing the role of a third-party marketing company, it isn’t uncommon for us to hear conflicting advice from the China-based sales team and the Western-based headquarters. While the sales team may tell us “this is an excellent lead. We’re really excited to build a relationship with ABC Company,” the headquarters may say, “ABC Company didn’t buy now because they wanted something different. I don’t think it’s a great lead.” This shows a difference in understanding of the sales process. Chinese salespeople are generally focused on building relationships first, then making sales later.
Young people are conflicted between feeling empowered by technology and enslaved by it – a signal to brands to push their lifestyle credentials.
Most young people are cautious or cynical about the role that technology plays in their lives, new research suggests, with the vast majority (94 per cent) agreeing or somewhat agreeing that ‘people spend too much time looking at their phones and not enough time talking to each other’.
The Youth Tech report by youth research agency Voxburner and YouGov, seen exclusively by Marketing Week, also shows that 82 per cent of young people agree or somewhat agree that ‘it’s great to take a break from technology every now and again for a few days or more’. Voxburner surveyed over 1,500 UK adults aged 18 to 24 between December 2013 and January 2014 on a range of technology-related issues (see Methodology, below).
The findings call into question the idea that young people are addicted to technology and inseparable from their devices. Elsewhere, the research reveals that while 40 per cent of respondents say they are ‘very interested’ in technology, only 9 per cent say they are ‘obsessed’.
“I think young people feel conflicted in their relationship with technology,” says Luke Mitchell, head of insight at Voxburner. “They love the convenience and empowerment that it brings to their everyday lives, but they also resent the fact that they feel enslaved by it.”
Mitchell notes that because technology is deeply ingrained in young people’s lives, they take it for granted and do not necessarily enjoy using it. He argues that brands should focus on how they can improve people’s lives, rather than the technology itself.
For example, he praises the dating app Tinder for helping people connect for dates in a simple and functional way. “On the Tinder home page there’s a video that explains what it does,” notes Mitchell. “Rather than labouring over the various features of the app, it shows how people don’t always have the courage to ask for a date and how Tinder can help.”
In the last year or so, there has been a noticeable slowdown in innovations in new smartphones — with both hardware and software.
In a five-year smartphone forecast through 2018 released last week, research firm IDC noted: “It has been widely acknowledged that the pace of innovation on smartphones has slowed down, even reached a plateau. Indeed, many of the new innovations launched in 2013 appeared to be incremental improvements on a theme, and it was questionable whether many of them would have lasting value.”
With smartphone innovation flattening, the next direction seems to be making the smartphone the hub — connected via Bluetooth, primarily — to emerging technologies. These systems include smartwatches, other wearable devices and everything in the much larger ecosystem of home appliances, cars and other products that, when connected, would comprise what’s being called the Internet of Things.
While this slowdown in innovation has been widely recognized, marketers for smartphone vendors still trumpet their devices’ new features at large-scale events where the latest products are unveiled amid hype that overstates the new capabilities. Samsung, for example, hired a live orchestra to play on an elaborate stage for the launch of its Galaxy S5 smartphone at the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona in late February. The event was attended by thousands. The Galaxy S5 will ship April 11.
Tuesday’s launch of the expected HTC One M8 has been preceded by online videos and plenty of hype touting a phone that has a 5-in. full HD screen (larger than the one on last year’s HTC One), two rear camera sensors for taking better photos, a Snapdragon 801 processor and 3GB of RAM for greater speed.
Framingham, Mass. – March 24, 2014 –IDG Enterprise—the leading enterprise technology media company comprising Computerworld, InfoWorld, Network World, CIO, DEMO, CSO, CIO Executive Council, ITworld, CFOworld and CITEworld—releases the findings from the 2014 Consumerization of IT in the Enterprise (CITE) research, highlighting the impact CITE adoption has on the enterprise; integration of cloud, apps and mobile device management; and the next wave of consumer technologies IT decision-makers need to consider.
CITE Adoption Results in New Policies and IT Purchases The proliferation of personal devices being used for work purposes has required the majority of organizations (82%) to make changes, from creating policies on how corporate data can be shared and investing in mobile device management (MDM) solutions, to purchasing secure file sharing services. IT executives and their departments are leading the charge for integrating consumer devices into the organization. To support a culture of employees working in the office and at home, over the next two years more organizations will support employee owned smart phones and tablets and 83% of organizations will invest in mobile technologies. The approval of consumer devices in the workplace is well received by employees; CITE will have a positive impact on user satisfaction (69%), and user productivity (66%) over the next 12-18 months (check out the CITE infographic).
“Consumerization of IT in the enterprise has created significant digital disruption in the past year, and the opportunity to innovate continues with the introduction of new devices and services,” said Matthew Yorke, CEO, IDG Enterprise. “Organizations are working to mitigate risk and build security that enables employees and the businesses to use CITE technology to move the business into the digital era and create improved employee productivity and customer satisfaction.”
The great news is that nearly every technology marketer we surveyed this past year currently uses content marketing. However, I’m concerned that while 46 percent of them have a documented content marketing strategy, the majority either does not or is not sure (click to tweet). Our research has shown time and again that marketers who have a documented strategy are more effective than their peers who do not — they face fewer content marketing challenges, as well.