By B.L. Ochman
Internet trends oracle Dr. Mary Meeker, Ph.D., a Partner at venture capital firm Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield & Byers laid out her 2013 Internet trends predictions yesterday, with mobile growth leading the way.
Top trends she cited:
o Wearable Tech Devices such as Google Glasses are the hottest trend of the year. This is fuelled by the rise of wearable and drivable mobile devices such as Jawbone, Nike Fuel, Google Glass and Waze-enabled cars. Wearables are coming on strong – faster than a typical 10-year cycle. This technology cycle will also include computers that are “drivable, flyable and scannable.”
Pundits like to make fun of Google Glasses, she notes, but some people laughed at PCs and the Internet. And she cites a 1977 quote from Digital Equipment Corporation founder Ken Olson: “There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home”, and a magazine feature from 1999 suggesting that Amazon (and by extension, e-commerce) was a “.Bomb”.
People reach for their smartphones 150 times a day and wearable devices – with faster connection speeds, longer battery life, easy voice and gesture control – could make access to information even easier.
The amount of “global digital information created and shared” – photos, videos, tweets, documents etc – grew 9x in five years to nearly 2 zettabytes in 2011, doubling every month. That’s 2 billion gigabytes!
o There’s still plenty of room for mobile penetration to grow. There are about 1.5 billion global subscribers, up from 1.1 billion a year before. That’s 30% percent growth. There’s a huge market for smartphone growth and mobile ad spend.
o China leads the U.S. in smartphone use. Meeker quotes Flurry analytics stats indicating that China has overtaken the US for active iOS and Android users. She also cites other research showing China now leads the US for the percentage of “media consumption time” spent using the internet and mobile; and, perhaps most importantly, she notes that Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba’s gross merchandise volume “surpassed Amazon.com + eBay” in the final quarter of 2012.
o America ranks tenth in internet user growth among countries with significant active internet users.
o QR Codes are huge in China. From March 2012 to March 2013, QR code scanning in China increased by four times to almost 10 million scans per month. That includes codes for coupons and rewards (42% of scans), promotions (33%), nutrition information or business card exchanges (22%) and payments (3%).
o Also noted: the new state of entrepreneurship: “We actually believe this generation is a little bit different. … We’ve never seen so many people turning their passions into businesses.” One example is Otis Chandler at Goodreads.
Here are Ms Meeker’s slides: