The Mary Meeker-KPCB Internet Trends report has unveiled the current developments in online business growth for 2016:

1. Internet growth trend is flat at 9% year on year

The only exception is India, where growth accelerated at 40% year on year. With 277 million users, there is still opportunity for new apps especially in developing countries. The biggest barriers to internet adoption are network infrastructure and incentives to get online.

2.Growth is slowing in global smartphone users

Smart phone shipments have slowed dramatically from +28% to +10% year on year, with Android gaining a greater market share than iOS but at a lower price (86% vs. 16%), meaning that although Android may not be a lucrative market for phone makers, it is becoming an attractive platform for developers.

3. Easy growth is behind us

The main GDP growth engines are China and emerging Asian countries, while overall worldwide growth in six of the last eight years is below the 20-year average. As an example, China’s growth has been faster for the past six years than for the previous 30 years. Tech companies need those Asian markets to become big – more than they need Europe or the USA.

4.Voice recognition is over 90% accurate

Technology improvements have increased voice accuracy recognition in major platforms like Baidu, Google and Hound Voice Search, with 65% of smartphone owners using this feature to find general information, personal assistance, fun and entertainment, and to find local information. (The good news is: we are still calling our mums!)

5 .Online advertising is accelerating

The online adverts market is divided between Google and Facebook, with Facebook taking the lead in growth with +59% growth vs. +18% for Google. This represents a US$22 billion opportunity for the US market.

6. Video adverts are still ineffective

Eighty-one percent of video adverts are muted, while 62% of people are put off by brand’s pre-roll viewing and 93% are considering using a video ad-blocker. This is a call to action to make videos adverts more authentic, entertaining, engaging and useful for their target audiences. Snapchat is winning the race of video advertising with its 3V trifecta model: Vertical viewing made for mobiles, Video storytelling, and Viewing in full screen mode at all times. User-generated content such as live broadcasting enriches engagement and reach more than any other type of advertising.

7. Millennials are shaping the retail business

Millennials are the largest generation in the US, and their spending purchasing power is increasing. Retailers will need to know how to successfully combine tech, media and distribution for this specific target audience. Anticipate that Generation Z will change the expectations of the retail user experience, since they are looking for a different and unique experience, and they believe strongly in word-of-mouth. Hypertargeting strategies will succeed if digital retailers know how to efficiently measure their data. Products became brands, brands will become retailers, and retailers will become data hubs and develop specific types of products and brands.

8. We need to start thinking differently about mobility and transportation

US regulators are embracing self-driving cars faster than other technological improvements in the past – a relevant move since these days car ownership costs are high and inefficient. Urban vehicle commuting delays are rising and commuting time is ever-increasing. Uberpool now accounts for 40% of all the rides in Uber, a solution for users who want to save both time and money on transportation options.

9.  Non-tech companies are buying tech-companies

Companies are buying their successors in business instead of building their way into the digital landscape. Some examples include Whole Foods buying Instacart, General Motors funding Lyft, Ford Motors funding Livio, and Disney+Fox+Universal acquiring Hulu, among others. Despite thoughts about the tech bubble “bursting”, financing tech industries has stayed strong, although there have only been two tech IPOs this year. In Meeker’s own words, “there are areas of both over- and undervaluation to exploit”.


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