The future of Australian mobile


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Given on 13 October as part of the Citrus #digibrekkie series of presentations on the future of digital media in Australia.

Focuses on the current state of Australian mobile and trends occurring globally that Australia is following with a focus on the future capabilities of mobile.

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  • Good morning and thanks for coming to the first of our break fast sessions. The presentation component should last 30 minutes or so and then there'll be plenty of time for questions and discussions at the end.
  • This morning I'm going to take you through a few different areas of mobile. We'll start with a very quick look at where Australia is at right now, from there I'll look at some broad strategies for embracing the very rapid growth of mobile and we'll finish off with a look at some of the future trends of the next few years.
  • Sometimes it seems like we are behind the rest of the world, however we have one of the highest penetrations of 3G globally, ranking behind only Japan and Korea according to Morgan Stanley Internet Research. We are quickly taking to the mobile Internet now competitiveness in handsets and data packages is making it viable for mass adoption in the consumer market.
  • The mobile space is turning into the major computing battle ground of the next decade. Google and Apple are fighting hard but Rim and Nokia aren't out by a long stretch so this fight will get very messy. Unfortunately now everyone has realised how competitive the market has got.
  • So we are in a position where real data is getting more and more scarce. IDC released some numbers in May but they only show percentages of market share not actual numbers of units shipped. The last accurate shipment data we have is now about 12 months old so we are forced to speculate and see how Australia is broadly trending compared to the rest of the world
  • The only real way to get a clear picture is to combine sources. We have some manufacturer data on units sold, that tells us the total mobile population – this will have to get updated as the publicly listed companies give their annual reports. The recent AIMIA Mobile Lifestyle Index report tells us what people are doing longitudinally and of course site analytics or aggregated mobile web analytics like StatsCounter will give us a usage view. No one piece of data holds the truth though. AIMIA say iPhone is at 21% - and they say that's wrong in the report, StatsCounter say it's at 62% Telstra say it's more like 10%, IDC says 40.3% - piecing together sales figures the accepted number is about 10-15%. Clearly with this much variation no one actually knows what is going on.
  • Confusing? Certainly. The out take from this is that there's lots of change happening in the market so the two things to watch are global trends and real user behaviour Phones cycle very quickly – 18 months – 2 years so we get a lot of new capabilities into the market very quickly. – So don't worry about the specific handsets too much, consider them from a capability standpoint and where things are heading We can assume the majority of phones are Internet enabled. We can assume the vast majority are or will be touch devices in the next couple of years. We can assume they'll have nice big screens with cameras, the ability to take and play video and will be equipped with a range of sensors to tell us things like their location, heading and how much the phone is tilting.
  • So bearing all of that in mind we'll breeze through some quick numbers around all of this so you can get a sense of what's going on then get into some practical applications of it.
  • Last week Telstra CTO said that Android handsets are now outselling iPhone and will be at 50% of total market share within the next year. Globally, Android have just hit about 200,000 activations a day. Apple have about 125000 but Nokia still has over a quarter of a million every day shipped. The global trend which correlates anecdotally to Australia is that Android will be the next market leader but instead of a single dominating player like Nokia as it's been for a while, market share will be split more evenly across the big four.
  • One of the biggest points to note from the AIMIA research is that there are now no really large demographic skews between groups. That was still prevalent last year in terms of usage and access to the Internet. 2010 has seen deep penetration of mobile use into every demographic – no one is being left behind. A Telstra survey has shown that one in 5 smartphone users is over 50. 40% are over 40 So what are we doing with our phones?.
  • As you'd expect we're doing phoney related things with them. They are a primary communications device so email is becoming important as a core feature. Modern phones have great capacity for entertainment whether it's listening to music, watching movies on the way to work or playing games. Entertainment is becoming a very large part of what we use our phones for. And we're increasingly using our phones to browse the web and use it to search for information.
  • Mobile allows us to be, well, mobile. We can take our computing device into our environment and still maintain connections to our social circles, search for information on the go or browse web content or applications to make the mosr of our transit time. Sensis recently did some research showing that 30% of Australians use mobile Interent on their way to or from work. 10% use it when they are out and about.
  • But mobile is becoming increasingly used when we are at home and work too. The same Sensis research showed 42% of Australians use the Internet on their phones whilst at Home and whilst at Work. This makes sense - Mobile devices are highly consumption driven. You aren't going to write war and peace on an iPad – but you can read it on a tablet with ease or watch a movie, tweet, check your friends' pics on Facebook all without firing up a laptop. Mobile allows an always connected immediacy you can't get with a laptop.
  • About 50% of people use them, about half dont Most people only have a small number of apps on their phones – a few people have dozens Unsurprisingly, the most popular apps are those for entertainment or serve a practical function. I did a survey here of 25 people and not a single person listed a game or lifestyle application in their top 3 favourite apps. This was across multiple types of handset as well. The sensis report I mentioned bore out almost identical results.
  • Over the next three years, mobile will become our primary method of connecting to the Internet. This report from Morgan Stanley predics that by 2014, mobile will become the dominant form of Internet connectivity across the world. Computing will become something that permeates throughout our lives rather than being something you sit down at a desk to do So given our rapid move to mobile computing, how do we utilise it as a marketing and revenue channel.
  • What can you do to embrace the changes that are going on in order to be competitive but be responsible at the same time with your marketing and development budgets?
  • Unless you have a game or you make an app that is indispensable to someone's life such as a facebook or twitter client it's unlikely you will ever recoup the investment you've made on a significant app build. To get reach you need to be multi-device which means developing your app several times or else using something like PhoneGap to port your application across multiple devices. The issue with this however is you can't use all the phone features as each device is different. The only time to really consider apps is if you are doing a flagship branding exercise or else you are using a feature of the phone such as the accelerometer or live view through the camera which you can't do in a web browser – yet. But within the next 18 months you will be able to EBAY
  • As the web is starting to fragment and this has been going on for a while now - the best thing to do is build an API. This allows your core services to be taken outside of the website without having to rely on the web pages of your site to deliver it. Once you've done that it's a lot more straightforward to wrap additional methods of viewing around it. Your website, mobile sites or mobile apps, facebook applications and other syndication systems such as widgets for blogs or desktop users.
  • There are so many different handsets and form factors. This has some challenges but if you put them to the front of mind it becomes quite easy to design for. Sportsgirl was optimised for WebKit and Mozilla style mobile browsers so it looks great on an iPhone or Android phone but works well on an old Nokia N73 or Blackberry Curve. Realestate View has taken the same approach. Internationally, John Lewis, the UK's largest department store retailer has taken this approach recently launching it's mobile site. Marks & Spencer have done the same. This is extremely efficient in terms of cost, gets you fantastic reach and thus drives fast ROI. Apps therefore come last once you have a good handle on your market and how they are using your service
  • In this last part of the presentation we're going to look at what mobile holds for the future. Some of this is taking off now, some will happen over the next couple of years.
  • We don't have a heritage of haggling in the west any more. Price comparison apps are shifting power back to consumers. Black friday – the biggest retail day of the year in the US last year saw over a million handsets use Shop Savvy's service to check pricing. So expect to see this take off as retailers start exposing their data out through APIs
  • Thing streams are the future in my view of a lot of brand and product conversation. The notion is you are pinning a stream of conversation about a real thing via it's barcode where everyone can interact for good or bad. Stickybits launched earlier this year and are going very strong particularly when Pepsico is on board. I'll direct you to the URL at the bottom for more info because this could be a presentation in it's own right. Regardless brand management is going to get a lot more challenging over the next few years so it's time to start looking into this now.
  • Layar is one of the most popular mobile apps on Android and iPhone. It overlays layers of information into your camera view. Layar is gaining popularity really fast, it's won just about every mobile award possible, it's well funded and has struck deals to appear preinstalled on just about all smartphones from 2011.
  • This is a concpet I am working on at the moment which I came up with by watching some old boys at the footy writing down stats in their footy records. This is a bit further off because of camera technology in phones needing to catch up but certainly everything else is currently doable.
  • Display technology will migrate to other locations but will be driven by the phone. The devices will be dumb but elastic. The classic is the mirror that shows your diary for the day while you are shaving or TVs that stream media content from your phone.
  • Phones will soon be a 1 st class gaming platform that are socially enabled and location aware The new HTC EVO is leading the way as an entertainment device that can stream HD video to a TV Sony have recently released an app to stream HD content to your phone or tablet – a simple HDMI cable will have that on your 50 inch bravia next year. There are persistent rumours that the next PSP will be based on Android and Sony's Xperia series phones. Next year could be a good year for gaming
  • We've covered off a lot very quickly this morning in terms of the current state of the Australian and global market as well as the future of where mobile is going. I just want to finish up with a story that illustrates much of what I've talked about here as a day in the life of an average early technology adopter – let's call him Tyler, he's in his 30s.
  • Tyler wakes up and it's still dark in his room. He rolls over where his mobile phone is beeping softly but insistently in it's cradle by his bed – the display shows it's 5:45am on a Saturday. Overnight it's determined from checking various services that the surfing conditions for this morning are outstanding so it decided to wake him up. He gets up quietly so as not to disturb his wife, grabs his gear and heads to the car parked outside.
  • As he approaches his car, the combination of his phone and key in his pocket automatically unlock the doors and set his driving preferences from that of his wife
  • Slotting his phone into the dashboard, it switches into navigation mode and determines the quickest route to the beach based upon traffic and roadwork conditions. Music starts streaming from his online music service, starting with his favourite rev up tune he's been playing every morning for the last week or so.
  • As Tyler drives along he sees blips on his map showing some of his friends, heading to the same beach for a surf. He issues a voice command that sends DM to his wife, telling her he's gone for a surf and he will meet her at their favourite beachside cafe for breakfast at 10am. His phone sends her the message along with the location of both the beach he's heading to and the restaurant with time to meet as a calendar entry and makes an automatic reservation with the cafe's brokering system.
  • Pulling up at the beach he gets out and surveys the conditions - he switches his phone to AR mode where it overlays key information showing wind speed, direction and swell height, a potentially dangerous rip that has been flagged by the Life Saving club and two submerged rocks sitting just off the line marked by the local surf club. His friends start to arrive and they head out to make the most of the surf in the dawning light.
  • After a while Tyler decides to try out his new waterproof camera and takes some photos of his mates surfing. Whilst shooting the pictures, the camera stores the data locally on a memory card as well as automatically synchronising the photos to his Flickr account via the phone in his car. A process runs at Flickr that categorises the photos and immediately flags those it considers blurry or under or over exposed, putting them to one side for review. Once he's finished shooting, the gallery link gets sent to his friends that have been recognised as being in the photos based on his social graph and based on their location broadcast preferences.
  • Packing up his gear, Tyler says by to his mates and goes to meet his wife at the cafe. Over a leisurely breakfast Molly reads an amalgamation of the newspaper services through her slate whilst Tyler reviews his photos on his iPad3 with it's bigger, high definition screen. Some of his friends have already seen some of the pics and have started threads of commentary, liking and sharing particular pictures with others who weren't there
  • Whilst enjoying the last of their breakfast, they both receive a notification saying a house they were interested in is about to start at auction. Receiving the live stream of events including the current bid from the auctioneer's tablet, the couple bid on the house remotely. Unfortunately they are outbid but have several more in their favourites. Finishing their coffees, Tyler pays for the bill using his account-connect service which issues a funds transfer to the cafe using a bar code on the POS that he scans with his phone. A few seconds later the till receives transfer confirmation and the waiter provides them with a paper receipt. While you're having your pastries just think – there's nothing in here that currently doesn't exist in one form or another – the connections just need to be made.
  • The future of Australian mobile

    1. 1. The future of mobile in Australia Citrus Breakfast Sessions October 13, 2010 @ajfisher #digibrekkie
    2. 2. What will we cover today? <ul>1. The current state of the Australian market 2. Strategies for dealing with mobile growth 3. Future trends in mobile </ul>
    3. 3. Australia? Flickr / CC: shelleygibb
    4. 4. Flickr / CC: soldiersmediacenter Apple v Google v Nokia v RIM
    5. 5. Data is getting hard to come by
    6. 6. Data sources <ul>Manufacturer data (1Q10) – units sold AIMIA MLI report (Oct 2010) – behavioural analysis Aggregated Web analytics – mobile web usage </ul>
    7. 7. Confused?
    8. 8. Quick numbers Flickr / CC: zebrasquares
    9. 9. Market share global trends <ul>Symbian will be #1 OS until at least 2012 Gartner predicting Android to be #2 OS by end of year RIM and Apple will remain big players in approx equal #3 spot Various Gartner trend releases over 2010 </ul>
    10. 10. Behavioural trends Flickr / CC: ydhsu
    11. 11. Key behaviours <ul>Making calls and sending texts Send and receive email Entertainment (music / video / pictures / games) Browsing websites Search </ul>
    12. 12. Mobile is heavily used in transit
    13. 13. But becoming a choice for consumption too Flickr / CC: traftery
    14. 14. Let's talk about Apps <ul>About 50% of smart phone owners use them Most people (~60%) install less than 10 Most common: <ul>Games, Maps & Nav, News & Weather, IM & Social, Photos & Video </ul>AIMIA Mobile Lifestyle Index Report 2010 </ul>
    15. 15. Morgan Stanley Research: Internet Trends Report April 12, 2010
    16. 16. Mobile strategies Flickr / CC: mukumbura
    17. 17. Native App v Mobile Web
    18. 18. Build an API first
    19. 19. Embrace difference
    20. 21. Price comparison
    21. 22. Thingstreams
    22. 23. Brand management becomes harder in Thingspace
    23. 24. LayAR
    24. 25. PlayAR
    25. 26. Enhance normality
    26. 27. Display
    27. 28. Entertainment
    28. 35. Flickr / CC: mikebaird
    29. 36. Flickr / CC: atmtx
    30. 38. @ajfisher #digibrekky