We take a weekly look at mobile and tech stories from around the world. Headlines include… Global Mobile App Survey: Consumers Want Better Fraud Protections and App Maker Accountability to Ensure Safe Experiences, Apple research reveals some dazzling AI tech could be headed to your iPhone, FTC proposes to strengthen COPPA, closing loopholes that allowed tech to surveil kids and much more…
Global Mobile App Survey: Consumers Want Better Fraud Protections and App Maker Accountability to Ensure Safe Experiences
Appdome, has released the findings of its 2023 Global Consumer Expectations of Mobile App Security study. The report is based on insights from 25,000 consumers, providing detailed data on their mobile app usage, expectations, and preferences concerning security and protection against fraud, malware, and other mobile threats.
“Given these findings, the mobile brands and businesses looking to drive adoption, lower the cost of customer acquisition, and achieve higher transaction volumes should take note,” said Richard Stiennon, founder and Chief Research Analyst at IT-Harvest, author of the introduction to this year’s survey. “Mobile app security is critical to any mobile app strategy.”
Apple is delving deeper into artificial intelligence technology, as revealed by two recently published research papers showcasing the company’s efforts. The research highlights Apple’s focus on developing on-device AI technology, including a ground-breaking approach to creating animatable avatars and an innovative method for running large language models (LLMs) from iPhones or iPads. The research paper, titled “LLM in a flash,” outlines Apple’s work on efficiently running LLMs on devices with limited memory, enabling the smooth operation of complex AI applications on iPhones or iPads. This advancement has the potential to support on-device generative-AI-powered Siri, enhancing its capabilities to assist with various tasks, generate text, and process natural language more effectively.
The Federal Trade Commission has proposed updates to the rules safeguarding children from the surveillance economy. The proposed changes to the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) would require companies to obtain parental consent before sharing data with advertisers and would prohibit the retention of data for vague “internal operations,” among other provisions. FTC Chair Lina Khan emphasized the necessity of these changes in an era where online tools are integral to daily life, and sophisticated digital tools are increasingly used to surveil children. The proposed amendments aim to enable children to play and learn online without continuous tracking by companies seeking to accumulate and monetize their personal data.
Despite privacy concerns and a cautious consumer environment, Black Friday 2023 saw success for e-commerce apps, surpassing the results of 2022, as reported by AppsFlyer’s Black Friday data. Mobile spending reached a tipping point, surpassing desktop spending, and discounts deepened. Consumers, facing financial constraints, embraced ‘buy now pay later’ schemes to maximize their purchasing power. The backdrop included a surge in app installs and effective user acquisition efforts on iOS.
Mobile has emerged as a significant driver of growth in the digital economy, with many consumers finding the mobile shopping experience comparable to desktop. In the United States, smartphone sales accounted for 51.8% of online sales (up from 49.9% in 2022), while in the UK, mobile spending surpassed desktop spending, contributing to over half (£6.5 billion out of £12 billion) of online expenditures between November 1 and 27. The data indicates the increasing importance of mobile platforms in shaping consumer behavior and driving online sales during key shopping events.
The surge in digital trading is notably facilitated by the widespread use of mobile phones, making the process more accessible than ever. Research indicates that 35% of traders utilize mobile phones when searching for a broker. Smartphones enable users to effortlessly monitor the performance of their stocks or digital assets, providing a convenient way to track investments and explore earning opportunities. Gone are the days when individuals had to visit physical stock exchange offices; smartphones have revolutionized trading by offering online platforms for seamless execution of trades. This transformation is largely attributed to the influential role of “Artificial Intelligence” (AI), serving as the foundation for various digital innovations. The article aims to delve into mobile trading apps and highlight the pivotal role played by AI in driving these advancements.
The mobile gaming industry, often considered to be reaching a point of stagnation, is actually experiencing growth and increased competition, according to Daniel Tchernahovksky, VP of Global BD at AppLovin. Tchernahovksky emphasizes that the competitive landscape and crowded market are positive outcomes of this growth. In a guest post, he explores emerging trends in the mobile gaming industry and shares observations on the market’s expansion. Despite the competitive nature of the market, he notes that partners are consistently launching new products and finding success. Notably, two of the top-grossing games in app stores, Monopoly Go and Honkai: Star Rail, were released in the same year, showcasing the industry’s resilience and potential for growth in 2024.
Vodafone has contributed IoT technologies to an Industry 4.0 demonstrator project at the University of Sheffield in the UK. The project, located at the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC), aims to showcase how digital technologies, supported by IoT, can help manufacturers achieve their net-zero and energy efficiency goals. Vodafone is one of several IoT suppliers involved in the initiative, featuring a total of 20 IoT use cases. The Low Carbon Smart Building demonstrator project is situated at the newly-opened AMRC North West facility in Preston, Lancashire, and is part of a network of innovation centers managed by the university in collaboration with industrial partners such as Boeing, Rolls-Royce, BAE Systems, and Airbus.
Zimperium has released its annual Mobile Banking Heist report, highlighting the evolving threat landscape and the increasing success of mobile banking trojans globally. In 2023, 29 malware families targeted a total of 1,800 banking apps across 61 countries, marking a significant rise from the previous year when 10 malware families targeted 600 banking apps. The success of banking trojans is attributed to their resilience, ability to bypass security measures, and evasion of detection on mobile devices. As financially motivated threat actors continue to invest heavily in these malicious activities, traditional security measures are facing challenges in keeping pace with the evolving threats in the mobile banking sector.