Monitising the Mobile Internet

mda.gifI was at the MDA/KTN Monitising the Mobile Internet in Tough Times event yesterday. Much of the event covered the UK PayForIt phone bill-based billing that the UK operators are championing. I’ll cover PayForIt in a future post. I’ll also cover Mark Curtis’ session on Flirtomatic in a future post as there were many insights for developers.

Here are some random insights from the event…

  • We are still fighting against the inertia of old phones (only 42% on Vodafone (UK?) are 3G phones) with poor browsers. Opera mini is a great short term solution.
  • Services and products that might have failed previously might now be successful due to critical mass of internet phones
  • Operators need to go to flatrate because people don’t understand what is a Mb
  • Ad funded – Blyk – people who go for free stuff are often not good target customers for advertisers
  • Brands still wary of mobile advertising due to no evidence of ROI, lack of understanding, unproven targetting and insufficient traffic to optimise targetting
  • Operators are wary of LBS due to Google Latitude privacy problems/press coverage
  • LBS cost per lookup (using operator service) is too large to monetise
  • Difficult to do services local to user. No business model (not enough users) to justify effort required to recruit (local) advertisers and put systems in place.
  • NFC – ecosystem not in place. Phone OEMs waiting for network operators to order phones. Network operators won’t order because they are waiting for a non-fragmented ecosystem to evolve.
  • Mobile search seeing 10% growth every month with rising number of queries per user per month