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Find out the week’s top mobile stories from around the world.

This week.. Global mobile ad spend set to tip TV in 2019, Us spent $1.3bn on video streaming apps, mobile biometrics & personal data privacy, IoT app vulnerabilities leave devices open to attack and much more…

Global mobile ad spend set to tip TV in 2019 thanks to programmatic ‘boom’ and 5G boost

The Drum

Global mobile ad spend will overtake TV this year if current growth rates are maintained, buoyed by a programmatic ‘boom’ and the rollout of speedy 5G networks.

According to Warc’s latest Global Ad Trends report, advertisers spent an estimated $138bn to reach mobile users in 2018. Across 12 key markets, including the US, UK, China, Brazil and Russia, this number is set to swell to $153.2bn in 2019 overtaking TV.

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US Mobile Users Spent Almost $1.3bn On Top Video Streaming Apps Last Year

Mobile Marketing Magazine

Mobile users in the US spent around $1.27bn in the top 10 subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) apps last year, according to a reportreleased by Sensor Tower. This is up 62 per cent from 2017, in which top SVOD apps totaled $781m, and is nearly three times more than in 2016.

Netflix continued to lead US consumer spending in mobile SVOD apps for the second year straight, earning an estimated $529m from in-app subscriptions, up 81 per cent from last year. YouTube continued to increase revenue by 114 per cent, grossing $223m, up from $104m in 2017.

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Catching Up With A Conundrum? Mobile Biometrics & The Privacy Of Your Personal Data

Above the law

Since mobile devices went mainstream, mobile device manufacturers and application providers have been working on ways to better protect your data from unauthorized access, with biometrics leading the charge.

Unfortunately, biometric access has created a conundrum — when the government seeks access to data on your mobile device, the balance between their right to access such data and your personal privacy has been anything but settled.

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Data Broker That Sold Phone Locations Used by Bounty Hunters Lobbied FCC to Scrap User Consent


Earlier this month Motherboard showed how T-Mobile, AT&T, and Sprint were selling cell phone users’ location data that ultimately ended up in the hands of bounty hunters and people unauthorized to handle it. That data trickled down from the telecommunications giants through a complex network of middlemen and data brokers. One of those third parties was Zumigo, a company that gets location data access directly from the telcos and then sells it for a profit.

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Chinese mobile users forked out 40 percent of the $101 billion spent globally on apps in 2018


Smartphone growth is slowing down globally, but users last year spent on average three hours a day — or one-and-a-half months a year — on their mobile phones and downloaded a total of around 194 billion applications, according to a report.

For its part, China accounted for nearly half of total apps downloaded in 2018, mobile data and analytics provider App Annie said in its new “The State of Mobile 2019” report.

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The rise of mobile experience in Africa

IT News Africa

Across Africa, the download speeds experienced by smartphone users vary greatly, even for countries with similar 4G availability.

While users in South Africa, Morocco, Senegal and Kenya connect to 4G signals on average between 72% and 75% of the time, download speeds vary from just 4.4 Mbps in Senegal to 14.4 Mbps in South Africa. This wide difference is because of a number of factors including the capacity of cell site backhaul most commonly used – microwave links are common in Africa yet support fewer users at high speed than fibre links – as well as the number of users and the quantity of mobile video consumption.

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Blockchain Goes Mobile: The First Crypto MVNO Announces Loyalty Rewards Program


This week, Miracle Tele (blockchain based Mobile Virtual Network Operator / MVNO) announced the public launch of a loyalty rewards program which has been available to token-holders and investors since last October.

The rewards are distributed in the form of an exchangeable crypto token, compared to the non-fungible ‘points’ systems more commonly known (redeemable only for products created by the points distributor).

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India leads world in mobile streaming users

Arabian Business

Indian mobile users tipped their global peers when it came to spending time on watching video streaming on various Apps in 2018, according to a latest global report on mobile user trend.

Mobile users from Brazil and the US followed Indian users in terms of hours spent watching video streaming last year.

“Total time spend on video streaming apps per device will grow by 110 percent from 2016 to 2019, ”according to the ‘State of Mobile in 2019’ report by App Annie, a leading global app analytics and market data providing firm.

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IoT application vulnerabilities leave devices open to attack

Computer Weekly

Businesses and consumers have a right to know the security posture of devices connected to the internet making up the internet of things(IoT) – and manufacturers should be held accountable.

That is the view of security researchers at Barracuda Networks who examined an internet-connected security camera to illustrate the growing security threat of IoT credential compromise.

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Researchers use Samsung data and AI to predict mobile game churn


Churn — that all-important measure of attrition — is often challenging to predict when it comes to mobile games. There are two types of churn — one at the micro level, between an app and a specific user, and the other at the macro level, between an app and all of its users. And the two influence each other in ways that are not at all intuitive. That’s problematic for publishers and developers alike, considering the cash at stake — $70.3 billion in revenue was generated by mobile games in 2018, according to NewZoom’s recent Global Games Market Report, and it is expected to climb to $106.3 billion in 2021.

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