The advent of the prosumer
In its latest report, Juniper examines how a fundamental shift in Internet usage patterns is shaping Mobile Web development, driving subscriber adoption and forcing structural changes within the industry. At the core of this evolution is the user as a creator and consumer of content (i.e. the prosumer), and the 'social web' -- which describes a wide variety of social computing tools enabling users to develop detailed Web identities, create online communities and communicate with like-minded individuals.
"Combining the power of the social network map -- namely: 'who I know, how I know and where I know' -- with that of mobility, presents the greatest opportunity for revenue generation of any of the applications as defined within Juniper's Mobile Web 2.0 framework," states Ian Chard, Juniper Research Analyst and author of the new report. "The phone is carried with us most of the time and contains a huge amount of personal data, making it a logical extension for the social network and a host of other collaborative Web 2.0 applications being mobilised."
Other findings from the report:
- Total global revenues for mobile social networking/UGC will rocket from $1.8bn in 2008, to $11.2bn in 2013, accounting for 50% of the market, while growth in mobile search and mobile IM will be more measured
- Service revenues will account for the lion's-share of total Mobile Web 2.0 revenues, although mobile advertising represents a significant opportunity
- Far East & China, Western Europe and North America dominate the global market for Mobile Web 2.0, but will be surpassed by the developing regions over the forecast period
Despite the new opportunities for players across the value chain, Mobile Web 2.0 creates fresh challenges over and above those typically associated with mobilising Internet applications. MNOs must adjust to advertising-sponsored strategies and accommodate partnerships with Web-based players, while device manufacturers and technology vendors must somehow find the means to stitch together what is at present, a highly-fragmented market. Any player in Social Web is also subject to regulatory measures concerning privacy and data retention.