Amazing Mobile Revolution

Filed in Accounting, Business by on February 21, 2011
The amazing mobile revolution is making the electrical, radio, TV, air travel, atomic and computer revolutions seem puny.
My father worked on TV broadcasting in the early 1930s, the Manhattan Project in the 1940s and had a noted TV repair and redesign company by 1950. I have been programming computers since 1960, using remote computer accounting since 1968, using “web forums” since 1974 and twice had leading computer companies. Along the way I wrote more than 10,000 posts about QuickBooks and revolutions we have had and can expect. However, the amazing mobile revolution is far more important than any of this. 
Speakers at Google’s recent Think Mobile event said that the pace and force of mobile growth was unlike anything they had seen. The  amazing mobile revolution is causing a cultural shift. Marketers can now connect far better with consumers. Mobile will create the largest technology market ever, dwarfing the PC industry and transforming almost every industry. Rapid consumer adoption and these amazing mobile revolution trends will cause disruptions:

    1. Mobile platforms have critical mass.
    2. Mobile is global.
    3. Social networking is accelerating mobile growth.
    4. Consumers are shifting time to mobile use.
    5. Mobile advertising has growing pains but shows huge promise.
    6. Mobile commerce is changing shopping behavior.
    7. The emergence of virtual goods and in-app commerce.
8. Not all platforms are equal.
    9. Change will accelerate and new partners will emerge rapidly.
10. There are still many emerging trends to watch for.

IPods and Itunes changed the media industry. IPhones ramped up faster and the iPad left competitors in the dust. The App Store left ITunes in the dust, in terms of cumulative downloads. Cumulative Android shipments hit critical mass.

Mobile is global. China, Russia, the United States, Brazil and India have 1.8 billion web users, 46 percent of the total. There are 35 percent more global mobile 3G subscribers a year, especially in the U.S., Japan, Indonesia, China and Brazil. Different platforms are converging (Facebook + Apple + Google; mobile + social + search). Real-time social features are accelerating mobile use. There is big growth in mobile sharing of locations and music (SoLoMo = social, local and mobile).

The time users spend on new mobile activities jumped to 59% (not the 60% in the caption below).


New mobile activities include using maps, games, social networking, utilities, the Web and apps. Amazing mobile revolution global data traffic should grow 26 TIMES in five years! This presents many opportunities for marketers. It has been hard to build consistent mobile ad revenue, but the mobile ad effectoveness is compelling.


Traditional channels show that advertising dollars follow eyeballs. This will repeat for the amazing mobile revolution. Android and iPhone smartphone platforms have the biggest growth. Internet and application use is massively higher on Android and iOS than on other platforms. Platform differences significantly impact monetization, with built-in billing and in-app commerce the key.

Ecommerce and mcommerce
Online commerce is gaining share versus offline. Online is now 5 percent of U.S. retail sales. The amazing mobile revolution should get to this level much faster. L
ocation-based services, transparent pricing, discounted offers and instant gratification are ways mobile is revolutionizing commerce. Location-based services enable real-time physical opportunities and transparent price comparisons, which can disrupt retailers. Discounted offers drive foot traffic to local retailers. Mobile shopping apps are changing behavior and driving revenue and ROI for retail partners.

We are only starting this massive amazing mobile revolution. Here are more mobile trends to watch:

1. Ubiquitous computing – Real-time connectivity, 24/7, in the palm of consumers’ hand/
2. More affordable – Device and data pricing falling.
3. Faster – Networks and devices are improving.
4. Personal – Location, preferences and behavior.
5. Fun to use – Social, casual, reward-driven marketing.
6. Access nearly everything anywhere – “Stuff” in cloud.
7. Explosion of apps and monetization – More, making more money.
8. Measureable real-world activation – Driving foot traffic to physical stores.
9. Reward/influence behavior in real-time – For exactly the right people.

The HTML5 versus app debate will continue. NFC (Near Field Communications) for payments, offers and loyalty will take off (so comnsumers buy everything from milk and butter to clothes, with a swipe of their smartphone). Consumers will depend on mobile health for monitoring, diagnosis and wellness. There will be a fast enterprise adoption of tablets for productivity. The impact of empowering billions of people, with real-time connected devices, has just begun.

We are in an era of constant digital connectivity. We have all digital info at our fingertips all times. Mobile makes us smarter. It changes the way we shop and engage with businesses. 2007 marked the beginning of the mobile era. Until then devices were not up to par. Mobile devices now entertain us. Mobile is immediate and local, for the ultimate shopping companion. One in three mobile searches are local. After looking up a local business on smartphones, 61 percent of users call the business and 59 percent visit it. 79 percent of smartphone web users use them to help with shopping. 74 percent purchase due to using a smartphone while shopping. 

 EBay nearly tripled mobile gross merchandise in a year, to almost $2 billion, with strong holiday shopping. It expects its mobile business to double this year, to $4 billion. 50 percent of Americans will have smartphones by year-end. Highly connected consumers mean a dramatic change in how we all think. Google mobile search traffic grew 4-times in a year.

All this means that mobile advertising should be a preferred channel.




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  1. That is simply amazing! Better then the Internet on a PC is the mobile global expansion! This will really change consumer habits and marketers techniques. Thank you very much for this quality article!
    Pedro Sousa

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