As an inveterate marketing technologist, I always love it when the prevailing data trends confirm an intuitive notion of mine. In this case, the notion has to do with the steady rise in mobile video consumption and its associated impact on digital marketing strategy. The prevailing data trend is found in the 2016 edition of Cisco’s annual Visual Networking Index: Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update white paper.
As one might expect from a networking equipment manufacturer, the Cisco Visual Networking Index white paper is chiefly focused on analyzing global mobile data traffic trends insofar as they relate to network infrastructure issues. However, it also provides a number of insights on current and future mobile consumption habits that should pique the interest of anyone engaging in digital marketing.
The Continuing Growth of Mobile (Video)
Here are some key data points that reflect the current state (through 2015) of mobile:
- More than half a billion (563 million) mobile devices and connections were added in 2015. Smartphones accounted for most of that growth. Global mobile devices and connections in 2015 grew to 7.9 billion, up from 7.3 billion in 2014.
- Globally, smart devices represented 36% of the total mobile devices and connections in 2015. (According to Cisco, for the purposes of the study, the term “smart devices” refers to mobile connections that have advanced multimedia/computing capabilities with a minimum of 3G connectivity.)
- In 2015, the number of mobile-connected tablets increased 1.3-fold to 133 million, and each tablet generated 2.8 times more traffic than the average smartphone.
- Mobile video traffic accounted for 55% of total mobile data traffic in 2015. Mobile video traffic now accounts for more than half of all mobile data traffic.
Taken as a whole, these data points paint a familiar picture of an increasingly mobile-centric world where consumers are turning to their smartphones and tablets to watch video with greater frequency and in greater numbers. The figure that jumped out to me was most the 36% smart device penetration among global mobile users—a number which leaves a lot of room for growth in coming years.
Speaking of future growth, here are some nuggets from Cisco’s forecast for the future of the mobile network through 2020:
- The number of mobile-connected devices per capita will reach 1.5 by 2020.
- There will be 6 billion mobile-connected devices by 2020, exceeding the world’s projected population at that time (7.8 billion).
- Globally, 67% of mobile devices will be smart devices by 2020, up from 36% in 2015.
- The total number of smartphones (including phablets) will be nearly 50% of global devices and connections by 2020. (Also, because of increased usage on smartphones, smartphones will cross four-fifths of mobile data traffic by 2020.)
- Three-fourths (75%) of the world’s mobile data traffic will be video by 2020.
- Global mobile data traffic will increase nearly eightfold between 2015 and 2020. Mobile data traffic will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 53% from 2015 to 2020, reaching 30.6 exabytes per month by 2020.
Author – Chris Horton – Source