Mobile Search - The Next Big Thing?
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Annual mobile phone sales are predicted to hit 1 billion by 2009 and there are already 4 times as many internet-enabled phones in the world than there are PC's.
According to Dotmobi (www.dotmobi.net), one third of the global population are connected via mobile phones today and approximately half are expected to be using a mobile Internet phone by 2008. An IPSOS survey suggests that 29% of mobile phone users in the UK searched for news and information on their handset during 2005.
The statistics are impressive and will get any marketers pulse racing. But it does seem as if we've been hearing about the potential of mobile search market for some time, and yet very few travel companies appear to be active in the mobile search space and mobile e-commerce revenues are still modest.
Up until now most advertisers have been ignoring mobile as a marketing channel, according to a new report by Forrester Research called "Interactive Marketing Channels to Watch in 2007." It suggests that only 13 percent of marketers use mobile text message ads and only 11 percent bother advertising on wireless application protocol (WAP) sites. It seems clear that advertisers are waiting for evidence that the market is there before deciding to jump in themselves.
Barrier and limitations to growth
Despite the huge number of people that have access to the mobile internet there are a number of barriers to mobile web adoption. For example;
1. Cost and clarity - carrier data plans can be expensive and confusing compared to normal internet access plans.
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