Each week the MEF team curates mobile stories from around the world. Essential news, the latest market insight & data nuggets, the Global News Round-up offers an instant international mobile content and commerce snapshot.
Global News Stories
Another mobile milestone for Facebook: the company reported in its Q1 earnings that it has now passed the 1 billion mark for monthly active users on phones and tablets. 1.01 billion to be exact. That is a sign of how mobile is approaching near-parity with desktop for Facebook: overall MAUs across both desktop and mobile totalled 1.28 billion. That’s without Instagram users or those on Facebook Messenger, which in themselves are each now at over 200 million monthly users (Instagram was announced a month ago), the company pointed out during its earnings call.
Payment solutions firm Adyen has released the findings of its fourth Adyen Mobile Payments Index covering the period of January through March 2014. The Index reveals that mobile web payments accounted for 20.1 per cent of all payment transactions on Adyen’s network worldwide in March – more than 66 per cent higher than March 2013. Of that 20.1 per cent, smartphones accounted for 10.9 per cent of all payment transactions, while tablets generated 9.3 per cent of total transactions.
Mobile advertising company Opera Mediaworks has released its State of Mobile Advertising report for the first quarter of 2014, which shows Android now on top as the No. 1 device platform. Android was the leading smartphone platform as of Q4 2013, but now, its the overall smart device leader, with 42.8 percent of all traffic, compared to iOS’ 38.2 percent. In addition, while iOS still leads in revenue at 52 percent, Android has grown to account for over 33 percent of total revenue.
PayPal is piloting a new payment method in its on-campus cafe that links together Bluetooth Low Energy beacons with Samsung Galaxy smart wearables to enable payments without the need for a bank card or even a smartphone. With smartphone-enabled payment adoption continuing to move along at a slow pace, the news is an example of the growing momentum behind beacons as a transformative in-store experience. While PayPal is already a leader in the mobile payments space, it is clearly not resting on its laurels and continues to investigate how best to leverage technology to simplify payment experience.
A new report by UNESCO says that mobile devices can boost literacy rates in developing countries, potentially reaching almost all of the world’s population. Furthermore, an expensive tablet or smartphone is not necessary. In fact, many e-book readers use featurephones. The report surveyed 5,000 people in Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Kenya, Nigeria, Pakistan, and Zimbabwe. “In places where physical books are scarce, mobile phones are plentiful. And while mobile phones are still used primarily for basic communication, even the simplest phones are a gateway to long-form text,” says the report, which was created in partnership with Nokia, which is still pegging a significant portion of its business on featurephones, and Worldreader, a free mobile reading platform that targets markets in Asia and Africa.
For the first time in three years, banks are experiencing a decline in positive customer experiences that is largely driven by Gen Y’s expectations for mobile and social banking experiences, according to a new report from Capgemini. According to the company’s eleventh annual World Retail Banking Report, more than 25 percent of countries reported a decrease of more than 10 percent in the share of customers with positive experiences, a significant reversal from last year, when many countries saw increases of more than 20 percent.
At least 220 million apps containing flawed Heartbleed code were sitting on Android phones this month, according to security researchers. A scan of 54,000 Google Play apps on 10 April revealed the number of downloaded apps using flawed OpenSSL code stood at 220 million, FireEye said in a blog post. By 17 April, that had reduced to 150 million, as developers issued fixes. A number of app developers and library vendors have been warned about the problems in their apps, but FireEye would not say which applications were affected.
In his first quarterly conference call with investors as Microsoft’s (NASDAQ: MSFT) new CEO, Satya Nadella promised the company would work to innovate more quickly in an effort to redefine itself as a mobile-first, cloud-first company. Nadella also explained Microsoft’s recent decision to eliminate licensing fees for Windows device makers that are building smartphones and tablets with screens smaller than nine inches. Essentially, Nadella said that the move to free Windows Phone for hardware licensees is a way to grow the Windows Phone ecosystem more quickly.
Global News Round-up – These articles are not written by MEF and do not represent any views of individuals, members or the organisation.