It's the year of mobile. 1998 was the first year I heard someone utter that dreaded phrase.
However, even though most of us still have to deal with 2% battery life by lunchtime - mobile is unequivocally taking over the world. It's a beast; a complex beast. You've got 4G, NFC, BLE, Wi-Fi and countless other TLA's (Three Letter Acronyms to the uninitiated) to navigate through.
But let's move on, we need a new cliché and for those that know me well I'm the man to deliver that for you. Globile is our new watch word - Global and Mobile - it's how you will all live your lovely lives and you have me to thank for saving you three syllables every time you discuss it.
And why would you not discuss it?
You have apps- 1.2 million of them in the Apple app store alone according to Tim Cook. In comparison with desktop, mobile users behave fundamentally different; they display different purchase behaviours and engage with a multitude of payment methods. The techniques employed to track all of these are different too. Almost everything is different. Mobile is an increasingly complex industry and in 2014 it is simply no longer enough to "have a mobile strategy". You need a mobile expert to help steer with clarity and accurately predict the future trends in the industry.
Massive growth in the UK
The 63 million people in the UK currently own 82 million active mobile phone subscriptions, with smartphone penetration at 62% and growing- rapidly, mainly thanks to the increasing number of affordable Android handsets. This figure is going to continue rising and is hugely important for not only large organisations looking to get the most from mobile, but also smaller businesses; highlighted by the fact that of the 62% with smartphones in the UK, 87% of these people are regularly searching for local information via their phone. Oh and did I mention that these figures don't even include the tens of millions of tablets?
Phablets and Apple growing in Asia
Despite Western Europe and North America appearing further ahead on the mobile adoption curve there is still huge scope for growth, but perhaps more so in other parts of the world- particularly Asia. China alone has 1.2billion active mobile subscriptions. Moreover, if we delve deeper into stats around the region, we discover that 98% of those users with smartphones regularly research products on mobile, with 69% having made at least one purchase.
"So smartphone adoption is rising, where's the complexity in that?" Being a mobile expert isn't just about smartphones; tablet sales worldwide have been relentless since the introduction of the iPad, however in this ever-changing landscape, they are suddenly now slowing as the world's obsession with 'phablets' increases. Last year in one quarter alone Asia saw 26 million phablets shipped to the region- double the number of tablets. The industry is incredibly fast-moving and global- much more so than anything before, and being able to predict what's next is everything; just ask Blackberry. In my short time with Globile experts Fetch I've seen our people working with the likes of Google and Facebook to harness the latest innovations which gives us the ability to keep client businesses in front of the Globile consumer and at the forefront of the Globile economy. Mobile experts have a comprehensive grasp of the app economy across multiple platforms, which are exponentially growing in size and importance. It's one of the reasons Fetch finds itself positioned in the app epicentres of London, San Francisco, Berlin (and soon Hong Kong).
If last year Cannes app of choice was Grinder, then this year you have to expect Tinder to rocket off the scale as the libidinous Ad masses fall out the Gutter Bar.
If you haven't kept up with mobile, frankly you should be scared. Very scared. Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer stated in May that their mobile traffic will surpass desktop by the end of this year- the company now has 430million mobile users, up 43% from a year ago. She predicts Yahoo's mobile usage to grow by more than 60% over the next eight months and now states they are a mobile-first business. Mobile is the single most important consumer technology today and you may already have a specialist but it's an expert who will help you achieve the most from the industry.
I recently met a Global Head of Mobile from one of the big media shops - he talked about gullible clients who are happy to pay lip service to the Globile tsunami - As you read this on your tablet device on the way to Cannes ask yourself am I good enough or should I Fetch me an expert?