Video, Apps and Ad-Blocking: Mobile's 5 Biggest Trends in 2016

Video, Apps and Ad-Blocking: Mobile's 5 Biggest Trends in 2016 Image Credit: Opera Mediaworks

It’s that time of year again when holiday campaigns are in full swing and financial planning for 2016 is underway. Now comes the inevitable review of what drove the industry forward this year, and, of course, the predictions on how things will be different next year.

Here are the five things marketers need to think about mobile in 2016.

#1:  ALL VIDEO, ALL THE TIME

If there’s just one trend to point to in 2015, it’s the non-stop growth in mobile video. Driven by consumption across operating systems, carriers and countries, mobile is now the first screen, surpassing both the TV and the desktop in terms of time spent. In fact, consumption and spending will get bigger than anyone can even imagine. Native videos are gaining momentum among Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and more. In 2016, we’ll see increased adoption of these native video formats amongst premium publishers and advertisers.

#2:  MOBILE APPS LEAD — THE MOBILE WEB FOLLOWS

The amount of time people in some countries spend on mobile devices — and specifically, in mobile apps — is now greater than the amount of time spent watching TV. The trend of mobile apps getting more traffic than standard browsing on the mobile web will continue to accelerate. Mobile apps have richer formats and superior experiences than the mobile web. If mobile ad-blocking takes off, publishers will be forced to focus more on making better content and experiences for their mobile apps. I think we’ll see even more creative and deep integrations of in-app content moving forward.

Vikas Gulati,
Managing Director, Asia,
Opera Mediaworks

#3:  REGULATIONS, RESTRICTIONS AND CUSTOMER REACTIONS

2016 Trends and Outlook Polls

Ad-blocking took center stage this year — and for good reason, because the entire content and advertising ecosystem could potentially be at stake. At the very least, the ultimate consumer pushback against intrusive ads is a wake-up call, one we can expect advertisers, publishers and even industry regulators around the world to heed. We can also expect some government scrutiny around ad quality, data usage, and an increased push for transparency in everything — not only in terms of the quality of media that’s being bought, but also around data. The companies will need to be far more explicit about how they’re using consumer data.

#4:  NEW FORMATS, NEW PASTIMES, NEW TOOLS

In the APAC market, smartphones will cross the chasm and begin to significantly outnumber feature phones. Because of these connected devices, smarter artificial “intelligence” and seamless mobile payments are all on the horizon. M-commerce is gradually taking center stage in the mobile-first, emerging countries while mobile payments will become mainstream. And we’ll also see an emergence of new players when it comes to audience data; expect a wealth of data from telcos, banks, commerce and retail providers to be consolidated on a common platform to create actionable insights next year.

#5:  IT’S NOT BRAND OR PERFORMANCE — IT’S BRAND AND PERFORMANCE

The distinction between “brand” and “performance” advertising strategies is slowly becoming harder to detect — and this is especially true when it comes to mobile. In 2016, we’ll see the lines between these two ad disciplines continuing to blur. The performance business in mobile is rapidly evolving, and next year the biggest shift will be that developers focus less on just driving installs, and more on finding and targeting quality users. Not only that, we will no longer see brand performance contained within mobile. We’re seeing it expand off-platform to channels like TV and OOH (out-of-home) to accelerate success. Once it goes mainstream, we expect mobile branding campaigns to be incorporating direct response elements as well.

About The Author:
Vikas is responsible for building and scaling the revenue and operations, enhancing the platform capabilities and strengthening the position in mobile advertising ecosystem. He is driving the network and relationship with advertisers, premium publishers, developers and strategic partnerships in APAC.

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