Friday, 28 March 2014

Facebook has over a billion monthly active users on its mobile app

"Facebook followers could be forgiven for being fixated by the $2 billion deal to acquire the virtual reality company Oculus.
But another disclosure from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Tuesday is also worthy of attention (no goggles required): More than one billion users now access the social network through mobile applications.
This milestone represents a significant shift from just two years ago, when making the leap from desktop to mobile posed a major challenge for Zuckerberg. That was the same year Facebook acquired the photo-sharing startup Instagram for $1 billion. Back then, it boasted some 30 million users. Now, the number of people using Instagram to share photos and videos has reached 200 million.
Facebook’s mobile transition is so well advanced, its services now account for 20 percent of the time people spend with mobile apps, according to a new J.P. Morgan report."

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Oculus VR is the first billion dollar company to come from Kickstarter

"Not even two years have passed since Oculus VR began a Kickstarter campaign to raise $250,000 for a better prototype of its virtual reality goggles known as Oculus Rift. It ended up raising $2.4 million.
Today the company sold to Facebook for about $2 billion.
By any measure, it looks like the most successful project ever to have raised money on the Kickstarter crowdfunding platform.
The nearest comparison is the Pebble smartwatch, which raised more than $10 million on the platform and later raised $15 million in a funding round led by Charles River, though its valuation is unknown. Ouya, a video game console, raised $8 million on Kickstarter, then also raised $15 million in a round led by Kleiner Perkins."

Instagram has 200 million monthly active users

"Today, we’re excited to share that the Instagram community has grown to more than 200 million Instagrammers capturing and sharing their lives every month.
From documenting a passion for jazz to the protests in Kiev, we’re continually surprised and humbled by the moments you share. As we exceed 20 billion photos shared on Instagram to date, we look back in wonder at the beauty and importance of everything this community has created.
The vibrance and diversity of this community has increased as it has grown. Over the past six months, we’ve seen new communities coming together in cities and towns across the world, whether they be in Guthrie, Oklahoma, or Guatemala City. With January’s Worldwide InstaMeet 8, we saw record turnouts of communities coming together to form friendships, explore new places and celebrate creativity in all corners of the globe from New Dehli to New York, Bucharest, Nairobi and beyond.
To the 50 million of you who’ve joined in the last six months, welcome. We’re so glad you’re here. And from our team to all 200 million of you, thank you for making Instagram great. We can’t wait to see what you’ll create next."

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

WeChat had 355 million monthly active users in Q4 2013

"Chinese web titan Tencent has just put out its Q4 2013 earnings report. Amidst the financial figures is the one number everyone wants to see relating to WeChat – how many active users it has. According to the company, WeChat has now grown to 355 million monthly active users (MAUs). That’s up from 271.9 million monthly users in Q3.
Tencent first started revealing WeChat MAUs at the beginning of 2013. Putting all the available figures in one chart, we see that the app’s growth accelerated from Q3 to Q4, having previously slowed down from Q2 to Q3."

Global music streaming revenues exceeded $1 billion in 2013

"The digital market has continued to diversify with revenues from subscription services, such as Deezer and Spotify, growing by 51.3 per cent, passing the US$1 billion mark for the first time. Global revenues from subscription and advertising-supported streams now account for 27 per cent of digital revenues, up from 14 per cent in 2011.
It is estimated that more than 28 million people worldwide now pay for a music subscription, up from 20 million in 2012 and just eight million in 2010.
Music subscription, which has helped transform Sweden and Norway in recent years, is now having similar positive impact in Denmark and Netherlands.
Record companies continue to license many new services, with Beats Music and iTunes Radio recently launching in the US. The industry hopes and expects these services to spread quickly around the world. There are some 450 licensed services internationally, including global services such as Spotify, which expanded into 38 new markets in 2013, Deezer, Google Play and regional services such as Muve in the US and Asia's KKBOX.
Digital downloads remain a key revenue stream, accounting for a substantial two-thirds of digital revenues (67 per cent). Downloads are helping to drive digital growth in some developing markets, including Hong Kong, the Philippines, Slovakia and South Africa. Revenues from downloads globally fell slightly by 2.1 per cent in value, the decline being offset by increases in streaming and subscription revenue.
Physical format sales still account for a major proportion of industry revenues in many major markets. They account for more than half (51.4%) of all global revenues, compared to 56 per cent in 2012. Although global physical sales value declined by 11.7 per cent in 2013, major markets including Germany, Italy, the UK and the US saw a slow-down in the rate of physical decline. France's physical sales grew by an estimated 0.8 per cent, helped by a local repertoire boom.
While vinyl sales account for only a small fraction of the overall industry revenues, they have seen an increase in recent years in some key markets. In the US, vinyl sales increased by 32 per cent in 2013 (Nielsen Soundscan), and in the UK, they increased by 101 per cent in 2013 (BPI)."

Monday, 17 March 2014

Weibo has 129 million active monthly users

"According to the IPO documents, Weibo pulled in revenues of $188.3 million in 2013. Like its U.S. counterpart Twitter, however, the company is still not turning a profit at the bottom line: Weibo recorded a $38.1 million net loss in 2013. The company had 2,043 employees as of December 2013.
“Since our inception four years ago, Weibo has amassed a large user base in China and in Chinese communities in more than 190 countries. In December 2013, Weibo had 129.1 million monthly active users, or MAUs, and 61.4 million average daily active users, or average DAUs, increasing from 96.7 million MAUs and 45.1 million average DAUs in December 2012, respectively, and 72.9 million MAUs and 25.2 million average DAUs in December 2011, respectively. A microcosm of Chinese society, Weibo has attracted a wide range of users, including ordinary people, celebrities and other public figures, as well as organizations such as media outlets, businesses, government agencies and charities.”"

42% of adults in the UK start activities on one device and finish on another

"Facebook research has found that 42 per cent of adults start activities on one device and finish on another, suggesting device-switching has become mainstream among adults in the UK.
The research into device use found that 63 per cent of people use two or more devices every day, while more than a fifth (21 per cent) use three or more devices a day.
The study surveyed 2,018 adults. It was commissioned by Facebook and carried out by market research company GfK between November and December 2013.
It found that the more devices people own, the more they move between them to complete tasks.
Of people who own two devices, 54 per cent switch between them mid-activity, rising to 73 per cent of people with three devices.
Mark Bulling, the EMEA measurement lead for Facebook, said switching between devices was now "commonplace".
Bulling said: "From our own personal lives, we know that five years ago we were just using laptops to browse the web. But we can see from this research that this behaviour is commonplace. We’re not just talking about early tech adopters.
"Businesses need to consider how any consumer’s going to interact with your brand between those devices."
The research revealed smartphones are considered the "go-to" device. Of adults who owned one, 77 per cent use it while they are "out and about", meaning physically moving around.
It also found that using email and Facebook were the activities most likely to be carried out across more than one device, out of a list of other sites and activities."

Friday, 14 March 2014

Tweets with photos get 35% more re-tweets

"So, the most effective Tweet features across all the verified accounts we looked at are:
Photos average a 35% boost in Retweets
Videos get a 28% boost
Quotes get a 19% boost in Retweets
Including a number receives a 17% bump in Retweets
Hashtags receive a 16% boost
An important note about these results is that they vary by industry; if you work in TV you may see one result, with another in sports. So we looked closely at what was different in each area within our sample."

Twitter took $665 million in ad revenue in 2013

"Total ad revenue generated by Twitter increased 110% to $664.9m in the year to 31 December.
Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation grew 256% year-on-year to $75m. Operating expenses such as marketing and research and development meant Twitter posted a full-year net loss of $645m.
In the UK, Twitter generated $23.5 million (£14.1m) in the last three months, and $43.1m (£25.7m) in the previous nine months.
However, Twitter's average ad rate has been declining since 2012. It’s down 81% from that point, according to data compiled by Quartz from regulatory filings.
Twitter concedes rates have been falling because its inventory—the supply of available space to advertise on Twitter—is increasing. It also says that lower rates appeal to small businesses and international advertisers."

“If it rains in New York, people around the country become miserable”

"For about 1.23 billion people on this planet, Facebook is there, in sickness and in health, in good times and in bad, in joy as well as in sorrow. But venting to Facebook creates a significant emotional ripple effect: In the social network, keeping your feelings to yourself is not an option, and curiously, positive vibes are more contagious than negative ones, according to a new study.
To measure how the emotional content of a person’s Facebook status updates might affect other users, the group of researchers (including two Facebook employees)--who published today in PLoS One--collected anonymized status updates from the 100 most populated cities in the U.S. between 2009 and early 2012. They then ran them through a software program called the Linguistic Inquiry and Word Count, a generally reliable auditor of basic feelings.
Rainy days, somewhat unsurprisingly, created an outsized emotional effect: Rain increased the number of negative posts by 1.16%, and decreased the number of positive posts by 1.19%. That observation set the stage for a natural experiment: How far would emotions motivated by rain spread through the social network? If New York City’s rain-induced pathos could affect users in New Mexico, it would say something remarkable about the power of online emotional contagion.
And that’s precisely what the researchers found. “If it rains in New York, people around the country become miserable,” says study co-author Nicholas Christakis, professor of sociology and medicine at Yale University. This works in every direction, though given New York's population, it has an outsized influence. But weirdly enough, it wasn’t the negative posts that carried the most viral ability: Each positive post yielded an additional 1.75 positive posts, whereas negative posts only spread an additional 1.29."

Demand for the final episode of True Detective crashed the HBO Go

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Angry Birds Toons episodes have had over 2 billion views

Friday, 7 March 2014

An estimated 200,000 homes in Australia subscribe to Netflix illegally

"TV networks in Australia are expressing fresh concern that local viewers are 'pirating' Netflix with help from VPN services. Officially unavailable Down Under, Netflix reportedly has up to 200,000 Aussie subscribers who evade geo-blocking mechanisms to happily pay for the service.
While Netflix is without doubt a hit service credited for doing something positive in the battle against piracy, it needs to spread its wings even more widely. There is one region in particular that would love to see it arrive on its shores, but probably won’t for some time."

1% of musicians make 77% of recorded music revenues

"Whatever money is left in recordings, you’re probably not making it.  That’s the harsh conclusion offered by Mark Mulligan of MIDiA Consulting, whose data shows a more extreme imbalance towards superstar artists than previously thought.  ”The music industry is a ‘superstar economy,’ that is to say a very small share of the total artists and works account for a disproportionately large share of all revenues,” Mulligan noted.
“This is not a Pareto’s Law type 80/20 distribution but something much more dramatic: the top 1% account for 77% of all artist recorded music income.”
In other words, the exact opposite of the Long Tail, a theory that seemed exciting at the time but has now been thoroughly disproven (MIDiA’s report is titled The Death of the Long Tail: The Superstar Music Economy).  Because instead of embracing choice, consumers have actually been completely overloaded by it.  The result, according to Mulligan, is a ‘tyranny of choice‘ that makes consumers less likely to explore, and more likely to glom around mainstream artists."

Indian online store Flipkart has sold $1bn worth of goods

"Indian e-store Flipkart announced yesterday it surpassed $1 billion in gross merchandising volume, according to NextBigWhat. Despite slowing sales growth, Flipkart reached the billion-dollar benchmark a full year earlier than originally projected and seven years after it first launched. Co-founder Sachin Bansal originally made that forecast in March 2013.
In the last financial year alone, Flipkart sold $217 million worth of stuff. Research from Indian commerce group ASSOCHAM shows it was the most popular ecommerce site in the country."

Mobile & retail in the US

"Three of the five major retailers with the largest proportion of mobile-only audiences are traditional chains.
Half of Target's 48 million online shoppers last month accessed the retailer solely via the mobile Web and apps. In June 2013, only 37% of Target's online audience was mobile-only. BI Intelligence found that Target saw the biggest bump in mobile-only usage of all the major retailers tracked by comScore.
Thirty-nine percent (12 million) of Best Buy's 30 million online shoppers were mobile-only in January, compared to 35% in June 2013.
Thirty-eight percent (22 million) of Wal-Mart's 57 million digital shoppers last month came by way of mobile devices, compared to 33% in June 2013."

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

45% of Paddy Power's online revenue comes from mobile

"Gambling operator Paddy Power has reported mobile revenues of €212m (£175m) for 2013, a year-on-year increase of 73 per cent in constant currency.
Mobile accounted for 45 per cent of total online revenues (€473m) – compared to a quoted UK competitor average of around 25 per cent – and 28 per cent of revenues overall (€745m).
Paddy Power says 69 per cent of its active sportsbook customers, and 42 per cent of active eGaming customers, made a transaction via mobile last month."

Samsung donated $1 to charity per re-tweet of Ellen's Oscars Selfie

"While we were a sponsor of the Oscars and had an integration with ABC, we were delighted to see Ellen organically incorporate the device into the selfie moment that had everyone talking. A great surprise for everyone, she captured something that nobody expected. In honor of this epic moment and of course, the incredible response of nearly 3 million re tweets, we wanted to make a donation to Ellen’s charities of choice: St Jude’s and the Humane Society. Samsung will donate 1.5 million dollars to each charity."
Source:  TechCrunch, 4th March 2014

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Over $1 billion has been pledged to projects on Kickstarter

"Crowdfunding platform Kickstarter has passed $1 billion in pledges nearly four years after it made its debut on April 28, 2009. More than half of the $1 billion was pledged in the last 12 months alone, a testimony to the rising popularity of crowdfunding.
In total, 5.7 million people from 224 countries and territories contributed to the $1 billion amount. The US comes in tops, chalking up $663 million worth of pledges in total, while the UK follows with $54 million.
In the meantime, about 1.7 million people have backed more than one project on Kickstarter, while 15,932 people have backed more than 50 projects — in total, $619 million has been pledged by returning backers."

Monday, 3 March 2014

One third of UK eCommerce sales come from tablets or mobiles

"One in three of all UK online sales are now made on a mobile device, according to the latest results from the IMRG Capgemini Quarterly Benchmarking (Q4 2013/4).
In the period November 2013 to January 2014, m-retail accounted for 32% of online sales – 6% were via smartphones, while tablet devices were used for 26% of e-retail sales during the quarter. This compares with 27% overall m-retail penetration in the previous quarter and represents 18% growth between Q3 and Q4. Visits to e-retail websites via mobile devices also increased and now account for 45% of traffic.
Significantly, online clothing and fashion retailers have a higher mobile commerce penetration rate, with 36% of sales completed via smartphones and tablets during the fourth quarter. Mobile visits to apparel website also reached a tipping point with over half of traffic now coming via mobile devices."

Ellen's Oscars Selfie pic is the most te-tweeted Tweet ever

21 million taxi rides were booked through WeChat in China in 1 month

"WeChat, the hugely popular messaging app in China, added the function to hail and pay for a taxi on January 6. Now, after more than a month in action, the taxi-finder app that WeChat works with has revealed some interesting figures.
According to Didi Dache, which is one of China’s top taxi apps, the integration with WeChat boosted the service to 40 million registered users (from about 20 million last year). So far, a total of 21 million cab rides have been booked in the WeChat app. Courtesy of a story on 36Kr, here are more stats from the startup:
Didi Dache gets an average of 700,000 bookings per day via WeChat.
Didi Dache and WeChat’s maker, Tencent (HKG:0700), jointly dished out RMB 400 million (US$65.6 million) in ‘bonuses’ to both cabbies and riders who paid for the fare via WeChat Payments. Note that all drivers are capped at RMB 50 in bonuses per day, while each passenger is capped at RMB 30 each day.
February 7, a day when many people were returning home after trips to see relatives for Chinese New Year, saw a daily peak of 2.62 million taxi rides via WeChat, of which about two million were paid for via mobile on WeChat Payments.
100,000 taxi rides were taken via WeChat in the first nine days"
Source:  Tech In Asia, 12th February 2014