Mobile data has remained king for the past four years, but that’s changing.
The mobile industry’s share of the global mobile pie has fallen by more than 60% since the fourth quarter of 2016, according to the IHS Markit Mobile Data Insight Report.
And that’s despite a number of major companies, including Facebook, Twitter, and WhatsApp, releasing new and smaller apps for smartphones and tablets in the past year.
It’s also a far cry from the dominance that the mobile industry enjoyed in 2016, when it accounted for over 70% of the total mobile device market.
“Mobile data remains king for mobile and will likely remain the king for a long time,” said Andrew Zittrain, senior analyst at the I.B.M. and a former analyst at Verizon.
“This year, there were a number more devices that were able to use more data than the year prior, and the majority of those devices are not yet on the market.”
What’s next for the mobile world?
In the past couple of years, mobile data has been gaining more prominence as a marketing tool for businesses and consumers.
According to a report from IHS, the mobile data industry grew by 10% last year, up from 7.6% in 2015.
But the data that companies are releasing for their apps is just as valuable.
That’s partly because they can show what their customers are actually using the app for.
In a recent article in The Wall Street Journal, Markit analyst Dan Ariely explained that the most popular app in 2016 was Snapchat, which had more than 11 million active users.
“If you think about what this is: If you were to use a Snapchat for the day, and you only look at the number of photos you take, that would mean that you’re taking 1,000 pictures per minute, which is far more than what the average user would be doing,” Ariele said.
“But if you think of it as being the average usage of Snapchat, it would mean your Snapchat was used by 1.6 billion people.”
As such, the majority (57%) of people who used the app in the 2016 quarter spent time on Snapchat in the most recent six months, according.
What this means is that many companies have started to take more risks when it comes to advertising their apps.
to IHS’ report, “The Mobile Advertising Platforms for 2016 Report” released on Monday, Apple, Google, Facebook, and Snapchat all released apps for 2017 that will allow users to record video and images while also making use of the company’s augmented reality technology.
Snapchat also has plans to make its own content available on the platform.
But for the most part, companies are taking a wait-and-see approach.
“We expect to see a lot more apps from the big players,” said Markit’s Arieley.
“I don’t think it’s a slam dunk.”
But as the industry’s adoption of mobile data continues to grow, we’ll keep an eye out for the biggest mobile players and how they’ll take advantage of the opportunity.