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
James B. Comey, the current director of the FBI, made statements on Thursday calling for America’s tech companies to make their consumer devices more wiretap-friendly. He believes that the efforts from giants like Apple and Google to provide users with ways to encrypt data and communications on their mobile devices will lead to a future where those who commit murder or acts of terror could have an easier time escaping law enforcement.
Angry Birds producer Rovio has partnered with YouTube to bring the video platform’s hit Slow Mo Guys to its Retry mobile game, a retro homage to the 8-bit era which its producers hope will become the next big thing. The partnership will allow for the seamless integration of branded content into the game which will dovetail with a media campaign promoting the Slow Mo Guys across key EMEA markets.
Mobile games will generate more revenue than console titles in 2015, according to research specialist Newzoo. In its quarterly global games market update, the company estimates that revenues from smartphone and tablet titles will reach $25bn in 2014, up 42% on 2013, and $30.3bn in 2015. The company sees steady growth in the mature US and European regions, but much more explosive expansion in the emerging south-east Asian markets and China up by 86%. Newzoo also predicts strong growth in Japanese iOS and Android game revenues, offsetting the decline of the region’s previously dominant feature phones.
Microsoft’s first attempt at a high-tech watch, back in 2004, was perhaps a little ahead of its time. But now it’s 2014, and the tech company is planning to launch a new smartwatch in the coming weeks, according to a report in Forbes. The smartwatch is expected to include common health-tracking features, like distance traveled, as well as a continuous heart rate monitor. You’ll be able to sync the device with different mobile platforms, according to the report.
Airtel Kenya has partnered with Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA). The partnership will make it possible for Kenyan citizens to make tax payments of up to KES 140 000 per day through the Airtel Money Service.
Two new reports from PricewaterhouseCoopers and its Health Research Institute on the present and future of wearables, including healthcare wearables, show that Americans are optimistic about the future of wearable technology, but less enthusiastic about the technology as it exists now. Health and fitness wearables still lead the category when it comes to consumer interest, and, the data suggests, employers and insurers could kickstart the trend by footing the bill for these devices.
A new report by Juniper Research has forecast that more than 100 million smart watches will be in use worldwide by 2019, with a host of premium brand launches over the next 12-18 months bringing the category into mainstream consumer consciousness.
In the past year, Internet shopping via a PC or laptop dropped from 78 percent to 63 percent, while the use of smartphones doubled from 8 percent to 15 percent and tablets from 5 percent to 10 percent, according to a new report from GfK.
Mobile is growing faster than all other digital advertising formats in the US, as advertisers begin allocating dollars to catch the eyes of a growing class of “mobile-first” users.
Historically, there has been a big disparity between the amount of time people actually spend on their smartphones and tablets (significant and growing), and the amount of ad money spent on the medium (still tiny).
Crafts marketplace Etsy this morning announced a further expansion into the offline world with the launch of an Etsy card reader product designed for sellers who want to take credit and debit card payments in person. The move is centered around Etsy’s larger goal to become a one-stop shop for creative business owners who are often marketing their goods in the real world, at craft fairs, farmer’s markets, flea markets, and elsewhere, as well as through their own local outreach efforts.
Global News Round-up – These articles are not written by MEF and do not represent any views of individuals, members or the organisation.