Emerging markets are increasingly accessing the Internet via their mobiles first, given the lower price-point of smartphones — and this is clearly seen in Southeast Asia, where there has been a rapid upswing in smartphone sales as more consumers upgrade from feature phones to smartphones.
According to a new report from market research agency GfK Asia, Southeast Asia’s smartphone sales volume grew 61 percent in the first three quarters of this year, compared with a year earlier.
From January to September 2013, consumers from Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, Cambodia and the Philippines spent $10.8 billion on nearly 41.5 million smartphones, according to a new report from market research agency GfK Asia. Last year, they spent $7.54 billion on 25.8 million smartphones.
Gerard Tan, account director for digital technology at GfK Asia, says September marked a new milestone as well – one in every two mobile handsets purchased in Southeast Asia is now a smartphone.
Among the seven Southeast Asian markets, Indonesia is the one with the greatest smartphone sales volume and value — no surprise considering its large population of about 247 million. Indonesian consumers have already bought 14.8 million smartphones worth over $3.33 billion in the first three quarters of this year, GfK Asia notes.
Thailand and Malaysia follow closely behind — with smartphone sales at 7.2 million and 6.4 million respectively. In terms of smartphone sales value though, Malaysians bought more expensive devices to chalk up $2.25 billion in sales, while Thailand raked in $1.96 billion.
As for the type of smartphones that are raking in the sales in Southeast Asia — it should be no surprise that Apple’s iPhones aren’t as popular in this part of the world, considering the relatively higher prices.
Android has a 72 percent market share in Southeast Asia, and GfK Asia notes that it “continues to be increasingly sought after across six of the markets.” The Android operating system makes up 91, 83 and 81 percent of total smartphone sales in Philippines, Malaysia and Singapore respectively.
It is also catching on in Indonesia — as the proportion of Android smartphone sales jumped by 23 percent within a year, from 37 percent to 60 percent. Previously, BlackBerry was the reigning smartphone operating system there.
Southeast Asian consumers are also expressing their preferences for smartphones with large screens. GfK Asia notes that out of total smartphone sales, the share of four-inch and above smartphones in the first nine months of this year has more than doubled — to 27 percent from 13 percent last year.
Tan observes that this love for big screens will continue — and extend to even bigger phones. He adds that phablets — which GfK defines as those with displays that come in between 5.6 to 6.99 inches — are the latest trend in the market. GfK says that despite being introduced only in mid-2013, more than 460,000 such phablets have already been sold.
It seems like as Southeast Asian consumers prove their thirst for smartphones, Apple’s tactic to leave Asia-Pacific untapped should probably be revised — after all, there is a huge potential market in Southeast Asia which Android is currently dominating, and this means space for Apple to grow its presence.
Headline image via Hoang Dinh Nam/AFP/Getty Images
Read the original post: Report: Smartphone sales surge 61% in Southeast Asia, Android dominates with 72% share
Mobile ad retargeting startup TapCommerce is announcing that it has raised $10 million in Series A funding.
When I first spoke to co-founder and CEO Brian Long earlier this year, he described the company’s approach to mobile retargeting (where ads are targeted based on user’s prior activity) as “very large amounts of data coupled with sophisticated statistical analysis.” This week he told me that TapCommerce is now being used by more than 50 customers, including more than 30 of the top 100 grossing apps.
Retargeting can be particularly important for e-commerce companies (who want to lure customers back to spend more money), so it’s not too surprising that TapCommerce customers include Fab, eBay, and Jackthreads.
Looking at the money that’s already spent on mobile advertising, Long continued, “Our major thesis is that at some point, all of these companies are going to say, ‘Okay we got the installs, we just spent $3 million, what’s happening now? How are we making money on these people?’”
Competitors are starting to emerge, but he suggested that they’re still trying to develop their basic technology, while TapCommerce already has a solid platform (though it will continue to spend money on product development). He also acknowledged that Facebook has started to add retargeting-style options to its mobile app ads, but he said that he’s not worried about the social platforms moving aggressively into retargeting — he sees them more as potential customers of TapCommerce’s technology than as competitors.
Still, he said he was glad to have raised a large round (and almost exactly a year after TapCommerce raised its $1.2 million seed round), because “part of this is going to be a land grab, just as it was on the web.”
The new funding was led by Bain Capital Ventures and RRE Ventures, with a strategic investment from Nielsen Ventures and participation from previous backers Metamorphic Ventures, Eniac Ventures, and Nextview Ventures. Bain’s Scott Friend and RRE’s Eric Wiessen have joined TapCommerce’s board of directors.
Continue reading here: TapCommerce Raises $10.5M To Compete In The Mobile Ad Retargeting “Land Grab”
Ilya Pozin is an entrepreneur, writer and investor. He is the founder of Open Me, a social greeting card company, and Ciplex, a digital marketing agency. He’s a columnist on entrepreneurship and marketing
As technology evolves, so do the cries against its impact on our personal lives To some, more apps means more time spent staring at a smartphone and less time spent with loved ones. While times certainly are changing thanks to the new tech in our lives, I beg to differ: tech isn’t hurting us, but actually helping us to find more balance.
Life’s short, and many of the technological advances that roll out on a daily basis are hoping to help us get more out of it. Rather than looking at tech as the downfall of humanity, we should consider it a way to improve our lives and help us to make more time to spend with people we love the most.
While you may be on the hunt for the mythical work-life balance, I prefer to look at my life as a mesh of both personal and professional endeavors. And the growth of tech has only helped to further my productivity and time spent with my loved ones.
Here are a few examples of how tech can help balance your life.
Whether “there” is home, work, or a quick errand, tech advancements are helping us race the clock faster than ever before. Whether you’re simply using Google Maps or a more focused app like Waze or Beat The Traffic, you’re now able to find the fastest route quickly.
The minutes you’re saving will likely go back to spending time with your family, significant other or even your hobbies. In fact, a shorter commute may even save your relationship — one study found commutes longer than 45 minutes mean you’re 40 percent more likely to get divorced. You should never let work affect personal relationships, especially if it can be salvaged with better time management.
We all know productivity and technology don’t always get along, which may even be how you happened upon this article in the first place. But when used correctly, tech apps and tools can be your productivity secret weapon.
Take Evernote, for example. This app syncs all of your notes, to-do lists, clipping and general reminders across devices, ensuring you never forget anything again. An app like CloudOn will help you boost your productivity by creating documents across Microsoft Office platforms on the go. These, along with countless other tools — like ActiveInbox or Google Drive — are here to help you get your work done and spend more time with those you love.
Gone are the days of timely news reading (think back to starting your day with the newspaper). Thanks to tech, we can now get news and information faster than ever before and in a more organized, digestible way.
Take the multisource video news service Newsy, for example. It analyzes world news for you and produces two-to-three minute, streaming video clips. Or consider The Skimm, a daily newsletter that simplifies headlines. Less time spent sifting and consuming leaves you with more time to get to the things that matter.
Alternatively, if you do find something you want to devote more time to reading later, there are always apps like Pocket and Instapaper. Better yet, save the long reads for the commute if you use public transportation and kill two birds with one stone.
Budgeting, saving, and checkbook balancing aren’t just time consuming, they’re also frustrating. But thanks to tech, there are a number of ways to keep your budget in check and find ways to get more for your money.
This could mean booking a cheaper flight, using sites like Kayak, so you can finally go on vacation or finding a low-cost concert ticket. It could also mean earning extra cash by selling old items on Craigslist or getting your daily to-do list done with help from TaskRabbit. Years ago, these things just weren’t as easy as they are today.
Think back to the days when a movie night with your family meant a lengthy trip to Blockbuster. Today, you’re able to cut the time spent choosing a movie to watch in half with Netflix.
Tech has provided us with seemingly endless options for getting things done more efficiently. I even built Open Me, my online greeting card company, around this very concept. Being thoughtful and sending a greeting card is a whole lot easier without having to go to the dreaded stationery aisle and spend who knows how long picking the “right” card.
Thanks to the numerous online review sites for every product, service, company or experience, we’re now able to save time and go with the most-approved option. Sites like Yelp mean you never have to go without a personalized review again. This means less dinners ruined by poor service and food and more time enjoying life.
Tech isn’t just helpful, it’s becoming an unmatched part of how we find balance and efficiency in our daily lives. Just remember to use them effectively instead of relying on them to begin making choices for you. You still have to be control of your own life.
How does tech help you find balance?
Read more here: 6 ways to use technology to find your work-life balance
As consumers are increasingly connecting to the Internet via their smartphones, advertisers are piling on the money to roll out mobile ads. In the first half of 2013, US advertisers spent $3 billion on mobile advertising, up from $1.2 billion a year earlier, according to estimates from the Interactive Advertising Bureau, the Wall Street Journal reports.
The share of mobile ad expenditure out of total online ad spending in the US more than doubled to 15 percent during the first half of the year, the data showed. In all, US advertisers spent $20.1 billion on Internet ads during the period. Comparatively, TV ad spending will likely stand at around $66.35 billion for the whole of this year, research company eMarketer predicts.
eMarketer is forecasting that that Google will take 46.8 percent of the US mobile ad market this year, while Facebook will have a 14.9 percent share.
➤ Mobile Advertising Begins to Take Off [Wall Street Journal]
Headline image via Jacques Demarthon/AFP/Getty Images
Read more from the original source: Mobile ads on the rise: US advertisers spent $3b in first half of 2013, up 60% on last year
When it comes to acquisitions, it’s clear that Twitter had been spending more money on acquiring technologies and talent in 2013 than in the past few years.
According to the company’s recently filed S-1, Twitter spent $52.2 million in cash and stock on acquisitions in 2012. In the first half of 2013, Twitter spent double that, $112.5 million on acquisitions. Note, this does not include the company’s largest acquisition to date, MoPub, which was purchased in September for $305 million in stock.
Other acquisitions made after June include Trendrr and Marakana (it’s unclear how much the company spent on these acquisitions). Even without these numbers included in the tally, Twitter has spent over $417.5 million on acquisitions this year (which isn’t over).
That’s a 700 percent jump in acquisition spend over the past year.
According to the filing, Twitter spent $52.2 million on 10 acquisitions in 2012, which include Dasient ($19.1 million), Summify, Cabana, RestEngine, Vine, Nclud, Posterous, Hotspots.io, Clutch.io and one other unnamed acquisition. Together, Twitter spent $33.1 million on these acquisitions (minus Dasient). Twitter also agreed to put up as much as $28.5 million of cash and equity consideration (i.e. bonuses) contingent upon the continued employment of some of the employees of these acquired companies.
In the first half of 2013, Twitter spent $112.5 on acquisitions. These include Crashlytics ($38.2 million in stock), Bluefin Labs ($67.3 million in stock), an unknown acquisition that could be We Are The Hunted ($2.5 million), and three others that could be Ubalo, Spindle Labs, and Lucky Sort ($4.5 million altogether). It’s unclear if Spindle is a part of this group because the acquisition was made in mid-June of this year, and it may not have been complete by June 30. In addition, Twitter says it agreed to pay up to $54.9 million of equity to employees from these acquisitions on the conditions of staying at the company.
What’s not listed in the acquisitions note in the filing is the $305 million purchase of MoPub (though Twitter did add this in other sections), and the separate acquisitions of Trendrr and Marakana, which were both announced in August. It’s unclear how much Twitter paid for the latter two companies, but counting MoPub, it’s safe to say that Twitter has spent at least $417.5 million on acquisitions this year.
In 2011, Twitter spent $20.4 million (in cash and stock) for TweetDeck. The other acquisitions from 2011 include Julpan, Whisper Systems, BackType, Bagcheck, and AdGrok. The total purchase price for these acquisitions was $18.5 million in mostly stock, but a small amount of cash. Twitter also greed to pay an additional $15.5 million in cash and equity for employment. There have been other acquisitions prior to 2011, (Fluther, Smallthought Systems, Cloudhopper, Atebits, Mixer Labs, Values of n, and Summize) but the filing doesn’t elaborate on these in the note.
While Twitter has made a number of acquisitions for talent, the company’s biggest acquisitions add core functionalities to Twitter’s advertising platform. Twitter sees MoPub as potentially being a key foundation of the company’s mobile advertising efforts. Adding Bluefin’s technology is key to providing analytics to advertisers, especially when it comes to providing marketers with information about what people are saying about their brands from TV.
Dasient added anti-spam and malware security features and talent to Twitter, and Crashlytics brought app crash report tools to the company. Twitter’s purchase of search engine became the foundation for its own search. According to this Business Insider report, Summize’s acquisition could be worth around $800 million with the current value of Twitter’s stock.
As Twitter’s vision broadens, expect the company to continue to be aggressive with its acquisitions, especially with some of the billion dollars it raises in an IPO.
Here is the original post: Twitter’s M&A Has Ballooned From $52.2M Last Year To Over $417.5M In 2013
Those who emigrate to countries like the U.S. come for a shot at new lives and new opportunities, but many of them still keep close ties back to their families at home, including sending money to help them financially. However, current methods leave much to be desired. As the sender, you cannot guarantee that the money will always go towards what you intended. And when you are the receiver and live in precarious circumstances (the same ones that may have pushed your family members to move abroad), receiving cash can be a risk. And that’s before even considering the costs involved.
Enter Regalii, a Battlefield finalist presenting today at TC Disrupt. The company has devised a way for people, via their mobile devices, to send remittances to their families back home, which are received in the form of credits to pay bills, or to buy groceries.
The company has already been operating in limited beta between the U.S. and the Dominican Republic. Today, it’s extending that service to Mexico, and CEO and co-founder Edrizio de la Cruz tells me the company is now busy raising a seed round to extend that further, including remittances between countries that do not originate in the U.S. One investor that’s already committed: Maverick Capital. It’s been helped on that front by virtue of also having been part of the recent class of startups to have come through the Y Combinator incubator.
“We see this as a global play, with a lot of interest for this already in Europe and SE Asia. It’s not just an American but a global problem,” De la Cruz says.
Regalii competes against the likes of Western Union and MoneyGram, which let people wire cash and are mostly web-based and in-person operations. Similarly, another service called RegaloCard offers people the ability to send non-cash remittances for bills, but it is mostly an offline service and not focused specifically on retail or supermarkets. Xoom.com has also focused on the same markets as Regalii, but does so only for cash-to-cash payments. But there is another basis for why Regalii is focusing on specific services beyond cash: “What we’d noticed in our research is that 64% of the money people send back home is spent on food, medicine or bills,” De la Cruz says. “There is no need to go through all these hurdles to get that money to where it’s being used, so that’s another reason why we partner with points of sale.”
Regalii provides its service for a $3 flat fee, as compared to many other services that work on a combination of fees and/or commissions. The company claims to offer 60% cost savings for typical remittances.
Companies in the world of mobile financial services have long eyed up emerging markets, where users may often lack convenient access to bank accounts and credit profiles, as a category ripe for the taking. In Latin America alone, this is a $69 billion opportunity annually, De la Cruz tells me. One of the biggest areas within that has been money transfers, where people who live in one country or city use basic cellular services like SMS to initiate, send and receive payments to family members.
De la Cruz tells me that the crux of Regalii’s service hinges on another interesting development in the mobile world: that of the mobile gift card. “We found a way to hack the mobile gift card,” he says: effectively this means that Regalii taps into the infrastructure that is already in place as a way of delivering the sum of money to recipients, with cash never coming into the equation.
I asked De la Cruz whether this posed another problem: people in emerging markets still seeing lower penetration for smartphones, or retailers and utilities being too behind technologically in order to fully engage in Regalii’s offering. So far, this hasn’t been an issue, however.
“There is enough infrastructure there,” he said. “There is a huge misconception around Latin America being behind, but they are pretty tech savvy and all the players we work with have centralized, gift card systems. We tap into those systems. It is a streamlined model that gets virtualized and put on people’s cell phones.”
Questions from judges:
Do you have to specify where your money will go exactly? Yes, for now. Later sending will be universal and recipients can suggest.
How was the the process of getting retailers on board? Not a problem; we have over 7,000 on board already.
Regalii lets immigrants pay for food and bills for family in Latin America via SMS. Each year, Latin American families receive $69BN in remittances, of which 64% is spent on groceries and paying bills (World Bank, 2010). However, senders (in U.S) have no way of knowing when and how their hard-earned dollars are spent, and recipients face the danger of receiving cash in dangerous neighborhoods.
Go here to read the rest: Regalii Is Changing The Way People Send Money To Family Abroad, Using Mobile And Gift Cards
Here’s the new logo that the 18-year-old Internet company will use going forward:
What do you think of new logo?
The general consensus is that people really don’t like it (or really aren’t fussed) — does anyone out there actually like it?
That’s not quite all…here’s a video that the company has released in conjunction with its new logo:
Glenn Tokunaga, Art Director and Senior Brand Specialist at Yahoo, explains more:
For Yahoo! employees, this isn’t new. We’ve been bleeding purple since 1996 when we anointed it as our corporate color. Why purple? Lore has it that our notoriously frugal co-founder, David Filo, got a great deal on lavender paint for our decrepit offices. But ultimately, purple evokes everything that makes working here so unique. Now we want to share that energy with you.
Marissa Mayer has also weighed in, providing some back story behind the new logo:
So, one weekend this summer, I rolled up my sleeves and dove into the trenches with our logo design team: Bob Stohrer, Marc DeBartolomeis, Russ Khaydarov, and our intern Max Ma. We spent the majority of Saturday and Sunday designing the logo from start to finish, and we had a ton of fun weighing every minute detail.
A number of companies have jumped on Yahoo’s revamp and proposed alternative new logos. 99designs crowdsourced a new logo from its user base of designers — who contributed over 5,000 entries — while consumer survey company Survata put its logo testing tool to work to discover that the logo from day 10 was the most popular among consumers.
Headline image via craigles75 / Flickr
Read the original here: This is Yahoo’s new logo
In a new report released this morning, mobile analytics firm Flurry took a deep dive into the different types of people, or demographic segments, which skew more heavily toward iPhone or iPad. Some of the findings were somewhat obvious – that shoppers and business travelers skew toward iPhone, for example. But others were a little surprising – like the fact that the group that skews most toward iPad are pet owners. Who knew?
For startup founders and mobile app developers, a study like this is important in terms of understanding your customer base, and how they use their devices, especially if you’re targeting a group that fits into a couple of different personality types. Of course, today’s report is about teasing out the differences between iOS users, and the context in which they’re using an iPad or iPhone – it can’t tell you about the Android user base, or those on other platforms, like desktops, BlackBerry or Windows Phone. (Though Flurry says that’s still to come for Android, at least).
The chart below is interesting in terms of understanding which devices may be used by which personalities, and where that usage may be taking places.
The study was based on an analysis of a random sampling of 44,295 iOS users on Flurry’s network in May. The company currently measures activity on 397 million active iOS devices, which gives it a large enough footprint to draw its conclusions.
Though the chart shows many of these so-called “personas,” or personality types, it’s important to note that individual users may fit into one or more personas because they over-index on a variety of applications. In addition, their personas may not be the same on iPhone as they are on iPad. In other words, people are not just gamers or bookworms, they could be both.
The “Everyone” benchmark in the chart shows the general iOS population skews more to iPhone (72 percent share) than iPad (28 percent share).
Those who tend to be on the move, like the above-mentioned travelers and value shoppers, tend to skew toward iPhone, as do the single and “hip urban lifestylers” (by which Flurry means “hipsters”), also skew toward iPhone – in fact, the iPhone represents more than 90 percent of the iOS devices owned by those groups, says Flurry.
Meanwhile, it’s interesting also to see that the moms group’s iOS usage changes over time. New moms skew toward iPhone, then they later skew more toward iPad. Flurry theorizes that this is because newer moms don’t have as much free time for leisure activities like reading and gaming, which is probably true. (There may be a practical reason as well, as any mom could tell you: have you ever tried feeding the baby while using an iPad one-handed? Ha.)
Plus, as the children age, moms often tend to put educational apps and games on their iPads for their kids, according to another recent tablet usage study by Nielsen.
The groups that skew toward iPad include the pet owners, home design enthusiasts, and small business owners. Again, some of these findings seem like common sense, if you had been asked to guess, but it’s always good to have the hard data on hand to back up those conclusions.
Flurry also looked into the time spent in apps on the different devices. Overall, iPad owners spent 42 percent more time in apps than iPhone owners during the month. iPhone owners spent more time using navigation, health and fitness apps, while iPad owners, on average, spent more time in educational apps, and those in Reference and Newsstand sections.
iPads were more heavily used than iPhones at night, around 6 to 11 pm, while insomniacs will pull out their iPhone more than their iPad around 2 to 4 am.
Flurry is optimizing mobile experiences for people everywhere. Flurry’s market-leading analytics software is in over 350,000 smartphone and tablet apps on over 1 billion devices worldwide, giving the company the deepest understanding of mobile consumer behavior. Flurry has turned this insight into accelerated revenue and growth opportunities for app developers, and more effective ways for brands and marketers to engage their audiences on mobile devices. Flurry has raised over $50 million in venture funding and has offices in San…
April 1, 1976
Started by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne, Apple has expanded from computers to consumer electronics over the last 30 years, officially changing their name from Apple Computer, Inc. to Apple, Inc. in January 2007. Among the key offerings from Apple’s product line are: Pro line laptops (MacBook Pro) and desktops (Mac Pro), consumer line laptops (MacBook Air) and desktops (iMac), servers (Xserve), Apple TV, the Mac OS X and Mac OS X Server operating systems, the iPod, the…
Go here to see the original: The “Whos” And “Wheres” Of iOS Device Usage Explained
Twilio, a company that helps developers build voice calling and SMS functionality into their apps, just hired up one of the people who helped make Skype huge. Tomorrow morning, Twilio will announce that Skype’s former Head Of Engineering, Ott Kaukver, is their new VP of Engineering.
I usually tend to stay away from all of this “X hired Y” stuff because… well, I dont care — but strategically, this one is pretty interesting.
According to Skype’s old exec bio page for Ott (which has been taken down, but is still visible here), he joined Skype when it was still a lil’ 30-man team out of Estonia. He began as their Director of Operations in 2004, then got bumped up to Head Of Engineering in 2005, first focusing on their core technology then shifting over to lead the consumer products team in 2008.
On the business side, he helped grow Skype’s engineering team from a few dozen people up to a few hundred. On the engineering side, he helped build and scale Skype’s technology into.. well, into Skype, as we know it.
Ott stayed with Skype after it was acquired by eBay in 2005 — but after finding himself with about a hundred thousand new colleagues after Skype was in turn acquired by Microsoft in 2011, he decided to move onto something new. He parted ways with the company at the end of 2012.
If nothing else, it’s an interesting move from a competitive standpoint. While Twilio isn’t a direct competitor with Skype (Skype builds a consumer facing communications product, Twilio builds APIs that let others build communications products) they’re certainly not ever going to be best friends. Twilio’s APIs let developers build telephony/VoIP stuff into their own products — and when people spend time talking on those products, it means less time spent talking on Skype. In some sense, Ott is taking on the very product he spent much of the last decade building.
With that said: Twilio has done a good job evangelizing with developers, is hiring like mad, and just raised a mountain of cash to keep things moving smoothly. At that point, the challenge becomes one of scaling — and if there’s anyone who can help scale a cloud telephony company, it’s probably the dude who already did it for Skype.
Originally posted here: Twilio Snags Skype’s Former Head Of Engineering As Their Own
One of the world’s first 3D printed rifles, its creator claims, has managed to rattle of an impressive 14 shots before cracking its barrel, marking a significant improvement over the single shot it managed before breaking it first time out.
The video below shows the fully-printed gun firing ten shots, using a string to pull the trigger. It seems the rifle’s creator wasn’t overly confident after his initial outing where the barrel split. A later video shows the remaining four shots being fired by hand (below).
It’s not the most graceful of operations just yet, reloading the weapon requires unclipping the barrel and pushing through the spent cartridge but it’s another step towards fully 3D-printed guns becoming a part of our lives. Whether that’s a good or a bad thing is a different question.
Featured Image Credit - ThreeD Ukulele YouTube