Mobile Internet Trends What lies ahead?

The Smartphone Versus the PC

There has been a huge increase recorded in Smartphone shipments compared to PC shipments which means many more people are going online using small portable devices than ever before.

Morgan Stanley analyst, Marry Meeker, delivered her annual presentation at the CM Summit 2010 in New York. Her report indicates many interesting points in the field of internet and social network on mobile devices:

  • While developer and domain initiatives have stimulated mobile content deployment with more than one million registered .mobi names, she expects smaller businesses to lead the growth of the mobile web as development costs decrease and more consumers become aware of the possibilities of their mobile phones.
  • Thanks to sophisticated, yet simple to use, development tools and the growth of mobile-friendly phones, smaller businesses will look to mobile as an effective, affordable channel for marketing their goods and services.

Meeker’s report indicates that Smartphones will outnumber PCs by 2012 and that they will outnumber feature phones by 2011. Mobile app usage and mobile search are both forecast to be up twice as much over the current year.

As a side note for those in the online advertising world, there will be a $50 billion opportunity in online advertising calculated from disparities between where media is consumed and advertising dollars are spent. There is definitely an opportunity for some innovation in this space (think iPad or tablet development). Global online advertising was up 12% to $61 billion dollars globally in 2010. By 2015 online ads are expected to top $100 billion.

Japan - A sign of things to come

The use of mobile apps and mobile browsers has doubled in the past year, with the U.S. passing Japan as the country with the most 3G users in 2009, with more than 123 million users to Japan’s 99 million users.

However, in Japan, the mobile phone has completely overtaken desktop internet access. This is a trend in many countries aided by devices such as the iPhone (and Android) that make it so easy and pleasurable to be online while mobile. Online advertising and commerce is therefore expected to take off dramatically.


  • Japan shows a great potential for mobile advertising. Up to $11 per mobile ad user in 2009 from $1 in 2003.
  • Japanese social networking site Mixi, has seen its mobile page views increase from 17% of total views three years ago to 72% today.

Noting the success of both Facebook and Apple in the App market, the companies will continue to leverage social networks for fans and for revenue. It is clear that social networks and mobile internet will continue to play a huge role in shaping the future of technology and business development.

Mobile Internet - bigger than 'The Internet'

Just to be clear, there is only one Internet - the use of the term 'Mobile Internet' is sometimes discouraged. It simply refers to the access of the Internet from your mobile device, hence 'Mobile Internet'.

Meeker predicts that the 'Mobile Internet' will be bigger than desktop in five years, noting that by comparing iPhone and iPod touch versus AOL and Netscape users, that mobile internet usage is increasing up at a rate much faster than the desktop did. Furthermore, she argues that 3G coverage has reached a global inflection point, meaning it is available to at least 20% of the worlds cellphone users.

The adoption of mobile browsing will eclipse growth rates seen in the last major tech boom with the PC and this is primarily due to the rapid worldwide adoption and innovation of mobile devices.

Mobile broadband is taking hold with a vengeance in markets across the globe, fuelled by strong demand for smartphone devices, and the availability of high performance networks and extensive application development.

Not only is mobile increasingly the method by which users are accessing the Internet, it is revolutionising e-commerce. Location-based services, push notifications, transparent pricing, and instant mobile delivery are the potential areas where this will occur.

Clearly the mobile market presents a significant growth opportunity for mobile service providers. However as this market takes hold, we believe that careful analysis must be conducted to identify profitable service delivery strategies.

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