We take a weekly look at mobile tech stories from around the world. Headlines include… Meta’s Metaverse March Goes Mobile as Horizon Worlds Beta Test Lands on Phones, Elon Musk’s X To Offer Audio, Video Calling, Mobile gaming set to reach $108 billion in consumer spend in 2023 and much more…
Digital Information World reports that virtual world pioneer Meta is launching the beta test of its Horizon Worlds on mobile devices.
Horizons Worlds is Metas version of the Metaverse itself, in which users will be able to run around with their virtual avatar and interact with the world and other users. It’s a closed beta but anyone (on Android) can join the waitlist to get involved and try out their virtual sea-legs.
Elon Musk seems to be inching closer to his stated goal of the “everything app” as its announced video and audio calling will be added to X (formerly Twitter).
Interestingly, no phone number will be required, with the app relying solely on the user login – a departure even from requirements of other popular current OTT services like Whatsapp.
Pocket gamer reports Data.ai and IRC’s latest insights show Mobile gaming is set to generate $108 billion in consumer spending, which is more than double console spend ($43 billion) or PC/Mac spend ($40 billion), and some $105 billion more than handheld consoles ($3 billion) and that mobile remains the main driver of growth in the wider games industry.
The report also delves into advertising in games, showing banner ads seem to be losing their appeal, and in-game ads remain prevalent. Rewarded video ads are still the most popular for US gamers with 20% reporting liking them.
The Financial Times reports that Safaricom, Kenya’s biggest telecoms operator is launching m-pesa in Ethiopia, the 2nd largest population in Africa and hailed as the “last frontier” for mobile money in Africa. M-Pesa is the pioneering mobile money service that has brought financial services within reach of millions of previously unbanked Africans.
Peter Ndegwa, chief executive of Safaricom is quoted as saying “By the end of September we will fully launch M-Pesa here. We have been building technology, created products, and will have M-Pesa integrated with more banks — the opportunity is massive,”
Forbes reports Qualcomm is to be the first mobile silicon developer to attempt to bring powerful Generative AI models to mobile phones with Its new Snapdragon chip. The new chips would allow generative AI, such as ChatGPT or Midjourney, to appear on mobile devices.
The article lists numerous benefits of on-device AI including enhanced personalisation and improved privacy, but the reality of having super advanced AI running our personal mobile devices is yet to be seen. Expect more updates from Qualcomm at their upcoming Snapdragon Summit, but other other developers like Apple, Google and the like will surely be soon to follow.
Hospitality. net reports how hotels globally are turning to mobile tech to meet the high expectations of its customers.
The role of technology and specifically mobile is apparently becoming increasingly integrated into every aspect of hotel user’s experience from booking to interacting with the hotel while on site and after they leave, enhancing the guest experience and managing operations more efficiently.