Mobile devices will outnumber humans by the end of 2012, I realized that many of you may be wondering how this is possible. Even if every human on the planet had a mobile device; which, of course, we know they don't, it still seems pretty incredible that humans would be outnumbered. So How is this Happening? The Secret has to do with multiples. In this case, while not every person has a mobile device, there are lots of people on the planet with multiple mobile devices. Think that sounds extravagant? If you consider how many people you know with both a personal and business phone (you might even be one of them) and how normal that is, the statistic becomes a whole lot easier to get your head around. So which countries have the most mobile phones per capita?
According to Susan Teltscher, an analyst with International Telecommunication Union (ITU,) it turns out that these countries tend to be small, with lots of borders, or numerous foreign workers and visitors who tend to buy local phones to use during their stay. United Arab Emerites currently holds the title of the most mobile phones per capita with 233 percent, followed closely by the tiny country of Montenegro with 210 percent. Clearly the U.S. and China rank high on the list, right? Not even close! It turns out that there is plenty of room for growth in both cases. Statistics from the ITU show that mobile phone penetration holds steady at 91 percent in the U.S. and only 56 percent in Mainland China. What does this mean for mobile marketers? The potential for growth in this industry is incredible in these markets. The wise marketers will find ways to position themselves as leaders - NOW, so they fire on all cylinders as mobile phones become even more pervasive in the U.S. and China.
Now hold on, what I'm about to share with you might be a (little Alarming.) But as a mobile marketer, it's further proof that this is an incredible time to be doing business. According to the latest analysis of Global Mobile Traffic by the network company Cisco Systems, "mobile devices will outnumber humans by the end of this year." Cisco also predicts that by 2016, there will be 10 billion mobile-connected devices around the world and networks will be carrying 130 exabytes of data each year. (That's the equivalent of 33 billion DVDs.) On the other hand, there will only be 7.3 billion humans on the planet at that time. To get a further idea of how rapidly this market is expanding, consider this: the report also says that (mobile data traffic) in 2011 was eight times the size of the global Internet in 2000.
It's easy to scoff at this by thinking that the Internet was still in its infancy in 2000. But the reality is that it had already ramped up and become a regular part of our daily lives by that time. So when you consider that there is already (8X as much traffic) on mobile platforms alone, it's clear this industry is accelerating at a pace we have never experienced before. Here are some other "Key Findings" from the study: Average Smartphone usage nearly tripled in 2011, from 55 MB per month in 2010 - to 150 MB per month.Smartphones represent only 12 percent of global handsets in use today, but they handle over 82 percent of "Total Global Handset Traffic."
In 2011, the typical Smartphone generated 35 times more mobile data traffic (150 MB per month) than the typical basic-feature cell phone (which generated only 4.3 MB per month of mobile data traffic).
What does it mean when the machines outnumber the humans? We'll have to table that discussion for some other time. Because right now, I want to focus on the exciting and numerous opportunities the rapid growth of this industry opens up for those of us who know how to leverage the Incredible Power of Mobile Marketing and leverage it with your own business.
"We can't solve problems by using the same kind of think we used when we created them." ~ Albert Einstein