Neomobile’s weekly roundup


Top weekly news from the mobile & tech industry selected by Neomobile

China’s mobile payment market to exceed $130b

More Chinese consumers are making payments via mobile devices and the size of the market is expected to exceed 800 billion yuan ($130.4 billion) this year, more than five times the volume in 2012, a report has revealed.

The report on online payment security, released by a research group headed by Ba Shusong, analyst with the Development Research Center of the State Council, described 2012 as the beginning of “a new era” for mobile payments.

Last year, 535 million payments were made through mobile phones with the transfer volume at 2.31 trillion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 116 percent and 132 percent respectively, said the report.

In 2013, one third of transactions on Alipay, a major third-party payment service under Alibaba, were made through phones, a staggering jump of over 800 percent from a year earlier.

During the “Double Elevens (on November 11)” shopping spree, the Chinese version of Cyber Monday, the volume of payments on Alipay through phones totaled 535 million yuan, 5.6 times the amount made last year, earlier figures showed.



India Is Vodafone’s 2nd Largest Country In Data Traffic; 3G Is 30% Of Data Traffic

India is now Vodafone’s second largest business in terms of data traffic. This was disclosed by Vodafone Group CTO Steve Pusey during the company’s earnings conference call last week.

He added that India accounted for around 40 petabytes of the total 85 petabytes data traffic in the AMAP (Africa, Middle East and Asia Pacific Region) region in the first half year, doubling year on year (YoY).

Last week, the telco had reported a moderate increase in its data subscriptions, clocking 42.5 million data subscriptions of which 4.5 million were 3G subscriptions. The data revenues however had declined to £111 million for the quarter ended September 30, 2013, down from £123 million in the previous quarter.



Mobile Ad Spend Expected to Reach $39 Billion in 2018

Total mobile ad spend is set to hit a high of more than $39 billion in 2018, up from about $13 billion this year. These results are, in part, thanks to innovation in ad formats, real-time bidding and mobile optimization, according to a Juniper Research report.

For mobile marketers, this means investing in mobile ads is more of a sure thing. Recent positive changes in consumer perception equal higher conversion rates when coupled with investment in rich media ads, which have led to big revenue gains among companies such as Facebook.

The Jupiter report focuses on Facebook’s success in using in-app advertising designed to better target consumers. This targeting strategy helps companies aim specific ads at the right users, instead of irritating people by showing ads that don’t apply to them — not uncommon with mobile banner ads.

The study emphasizes that 41 percent of Facebook’s advertising revenue originates from mobile platforms. Facebook plans to next introduce video advertising, although news sources report the new auto-play video ads are on hold until at least 2014.



SMS revenues may be in decline but not in Latam

A recent report from Informa has suggested that SMS is in decline. Global annual revenues are expected to fall by $23 billion by 2018. The research points to the continuing adoption and use of over-the-top (OTT) messaging applications line WhatsApp in both developed and emerging markets (such as India) as the main cause. However, Acisison’s views this as an opportunity for mobile operators to offer a richer form of messaging which combines SMS and OTT services. at the opportunity for mobile operators to offer a richer form of messaging which combines SMS and OTT services. The company recently released its Monitor of Mobile Value Added Services (MAVAM) reports SMS usage continues to increase and be a major contributor to operator revenues in Latin American markets such as Brazil, Mexico and Argentina.

Informa Telecoms & Media has forecast that global annual SMS revenues will fall by $23 billion by 2018, to $96.7 billion, down from $120 billion in 2013.

The decline in global SMS revenues will largely be caused by the continuing adoption and use of over-the-top (OTT) messaging applications in both developed and emerging markets, the report suggests.



Estimated global digital revenue of selected game publishers

estimated ttm global digital revenue-gamasutra

As the diagram above shows, the digital market from these eight companies totals around $8 to $9 billion in the last 12 months

From this snapshot, you can see that companies like EA and Take-Two are growing their digital revenues quickly, and others like Activision Blizzard have large and fairly stable digital revenues. Yet others, like Zynga and Gree, are undergoing growth and contraction even over this short window.

You’ll note quite a few companies missing from this picture: Sega, Konami, Namco Bandai, Tecmo Koei, Facebook, Google, Apple, Tencent, and others. For some (like Sega) This is because the available data was not satisfactorily enough to include them in a diagram like the one above. For others, some data is reported but not with enough regularity or transparency.

Others are excluded because they are portals for others, like Nintendo and GameStop. These also happen to be two of the most transparent companies about their digital revenues. If every company were as faithful reporting their digital sales as Nintendo and GameStop, we would have a much better take on the health of the market.

(For the record, Nintendo’s annual digital revenues grew from $120 million in September 2012 to $247 million in September 2013. GameStop reports on a different schedule, but the nearest comparable figures would be from $134 million last year to $152 million this year.)

Microsoft and Sony are particularly obstinate about digital data, despite being two of the most important players in this area. Until they begin to contribute to this discussion, we will have to rely on figures like the following from Electronic Arts