It’s been a good six months since our mid-year review of the growth of mobile. So I think it’s time to take another look at where the field is and where it’s going.
Our assessment? The state of our mobile landscape is strong.
It doesn’t take a statistical analyst to know that mobile devices – and the apps that make us love them – are soaring in popularity and becoming ever more integrated into our daily lives. But a flurry of recent year-end reports have put some exact numbers to the phenomenon we see every day.
According to a report released earlier this month by Cisco, global mobile data use grew 81 percent in 2013 as compared to the previous year. At the same time, average traffic per smartphone grew from 353 MB per month in 2012 to 529 MB per month last year.
What are users doing with all that data?
For one, they’ve been downloading apps, naturally. Gaming (Candy Crush Saga, anyone?), social photo and video (hello, Vine), music, and banking and financial management apps were among the high-growth market segments last year, according to a recent report from App Annie. And use of messaging apps nearly doubled, according to Flurry Analytics.
They’ve also been buying things. Business Insider has estimated that mobile payments – transactions in a physical location, aided by a mobile device – would hit $30 billion last year. Starbucks alone topped $1 billion in mobile payments, according to Business Insider’s estimates.
And they’ve been communicating. Twitter’s earnings release earlier this month disappointed many investors; nonetheless, the numbers show the importance of mobile to any modern digital business model. More than 76 percent of Twitter’s users are now accessing the social media service over mobile devices and mobile accounted for more than $165 million of the company’s $221 million in ad revenue last year.
Looking forward, mobile use is likely to keep growing by leaps and bounds, according to a forecast released earlier this month by Cisco.
So it’s clear that mobile is on its way up for some time to come. How will you take advantage?