Technology | Media | Telecommunications

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Europe is Primed for Mobile Social Networking

Mobile Internet apps are beginning to play a role in shaping the future of social network service usage. Both social networking site operators and mobile phone service providers are very aware of the mutual benefits, according to the latest market study by Pyramid Research.

The ability of members to access their social network from anywhere enhances the utility of the sites, while mobile social networking greatly increases mobile service provider's data network usage and creates the potential for new revenue streams from subscription fees or advertising.

Pyramid believes that Europe, with more than one billion mobile phone service subscribers and roughly 130 million mobile Internet users in 2009, is a fertile growth market for mobile social networking applications.

Accelerating adoption of mobile social networking in Europe will be critical to local wireless service providers, handset vendors, software developers and the most popular social networking web site operators.

Technical and business development issues, such as the deployment of 3G network infrastructure and the penetration of smartphones -- that are of paramount importance to many other markets -- are with few exceptions, non-issues in most European markets.

In fact, Pyramid reports that the total number of mobile social networking users in Europe already reached approximately 52 million in 2009 and is forecast to reach 112 million in 2010.

The continued uptake of mobile social networking in Europe will be driven by an enhanced user experience, mobile service provider efforts to promote mobile social networking and co-marketing by social network operators that's aimed at increasing mobile access among their existing members.