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Google Play Is Closing The Gap With Apple’s App Store

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Google Play Starts To Close The Monetization Gap With Apple's App Store (GigaOM)
Android is catching up to iOS in terms of apps for sale and developer attention. But the most influential mobile companies have yet to bypass iOS for Android. Android revenues are climbing rapidly and the number of apps available is essentially even — in October both Google Play and iOS App Store claimed 700,000 apps for sale. As a result, several developers are quoted saying that while Apple’s App Store is still preferable for a variety of reasons, it’s the rate at which Android is growing that is catching their eyes. While the ability for developers to make money from Android is indeed catching up to that of iOS, it’s still behind. And that’s a big metric: iOS app sales still generate 3.5 times as much revenue as Android apps. Read >>

The UK Spends The Most On Mobile Advertising Per User (eMarketer)
Mobile advertisers in the UK spend more trying to reach each mobile Internet user in the country than anywhere else in the world, according to new estimates by eMarketer. By this metric, the UK topped the overall-larger U.S. mobile advertising market, as well as Japan and Scandinavian countries.

Mobile ad spend per country

Advertisers spent $ 36.35 per mobile Internet user in the UK in 2012, higher than any other market worldwide. Norway came in a close second, at $ 35.71 per person. The U.S. has the third-highest spending per mobile Internet user in the world; advertisers in the country spent an average of $ 31.50 to reach each one. Read >>

Microsoft Gets The Cloud With Integration And Focus On Mobile (GigaOM)
Microsoft is releasing a preview of a new sign-on experience that better suits mobile devices and eliminates the need to enter login information more than once across Windows Azure, Office 365, Windows email and other company products. The development shows Microsoft has a better sense now of how enterprises actually use the cloud (on any available device, be it a phone or a laptop) and brings the company closer to Google’s unified login approach, which allows customers to sign in once across all of the Google products in one go. Read >>

Facebook Is Said to Create Mobile Location-Tracking App (Bloomberg)
Facebook is developing a smartphone application that will track the location of users, bolstering efforts to benefit from growing use of social media on mobile computers. The app, scheduled for release by mid-March, is designed to help users find nearby friends and would run even when the program isn’t open on a handset, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified because the plans aren’t public. Facebook is adding features to help it profit from the surging portion of its more than 1 billion users who access the service via handheld devices. The tracking app could help Facebook sell ads based on users’ whereabouts and daily habits. It may also raise the hackles of consumers and privacy advocates concerned about the company’s handling of personal information. Read >>

Apple Mobile Internet Traffic Share Dropped ... (StatCounter via dazinfo)
As per StatCounter, more than a quarter (25.86 percent) of global mobile Internet traffic went through Apple devices during January 2013.

apple mobile web traffic decline

Nokia was at the zenith with 37.67 percent in January 2012. But this year, it dropped to the third position. The company accounted for just 22.15 percent of total mobile Internet traffic in January 2013. By contrast, Samsung leveraged on Apple and Nokia’s mobile Internet traffic decline, and it accounted for 22.69 percent of overall mobile traffic share in January this year.

... But It Still Drives The Most Mobile Internet Traffic Globally (StatCounter via i2G)
Amid all the hand-wringing over Apple's "impending decline," it's certainly interesting to note that the StatCounter traffic metrics show that Apple is driving more mobile Internet traffic than any of its rivals. This is partly a product of the iPhone 5's success during the holiday quarter.

top 10 mobile vendors   

The StatCounter data reflect mobile OEM market share based on actual Internet traffic. This stands in marked contrast to most smartphone and tablet market share estimates that are based on shipments or consumer surveys.  Read >>

Nothing Has Really Gone Wrong With Apple  (Various via Daring Fireball)
The following is from a Strategy Analytics report on U.S. phone market share: "Mobile phone shipments grew 4 percent annually to reach 52 million units in the United States during the fourth quarter of 2012. Apple became the number one mobile phone vendor for the first time ever, capturing a record 34 percent market share." That’s not number one "smartphone" vendor. That’s number one phone vendor, period. According to NPD, one of three phones shipped in the U.S. last quarter was an iPhone. NPD puts Apple at number one in the U.S. in "smartphone" sales, although Samsung has tightened that race. But keep in mind that Samsung’s line of “smartphone” includes a lot of low-end junk, not just high-end Galaxy and Note units. In terms of usage, Net Marketshare still has iOS with a massive mobile Web browser share lead over Android. None of these numbers square with the "something has clearly gone wrong at Apple" belief. Read >>

Another Case For Small Restaurants To Embrace Apps (IAB via ZDNet)
If your small restaurant or food service business hasn't added a mobile website or mobile application, it might want to rethink that strategy. At least two-thirds of consumers responding to a recent survey have used their smartphone or tablet computer to place an online order for either pick-up or delivery, according to data collected in January by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and interactive media company, Viggle. So at the very least, small food service businesses should look more closely at their own mobile profile or they could find themselves missing out on a big transition. Read >>

What’s Your Mobile Strategy? (Brian Solis)
Set aside your social media strategy for the moment. In a mobile economy, apps become the currency of a new information exchange. One of the most fascinating and least understood aspects of apps is that they create a contained experience that essentially is its own Internet. Everything your customer needs or could possibly need should be included in the app. And those mobile browsers that need to hit the traditional Web, visitors will expect to see a page optimized for the smaller screen. Customer behavior is evolving. Technology is evolving. Is your digital strategy evolving? Is it considering shifts in attention, activity, and expectations and designing new experiences to react and lead accordingly? The time is now to answer these questions and more. Read >>

Samsung Starts $ 100 Million Venture Fund (BGR)
Samsung has changed the game with its smartphones, television sets, and computers, and is now looking to do it again in the Silicon Valley startup scene. The company has created a $ 100 million venture fund that will invest in early-stage startups concerning remote computing, cybersecurity, mobility, and mobile privacy. The fund, known as Samsung Catalyst Fund, will function more like a seed investment fund and will work alongside the larger $ 1 billion Samsung Venture Fund in providing partnership opportunities and guidance to startup companies. Read >>

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