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Operators Must Leverage Mobile Social Networks in Europe, Pyramid Finds
Jun 24, 2011 (03:06 PM EDT)
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., June 24, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- With Facebook user penetration reaching almost half the population in some European markets such as the U.K. and Sweden, operators must learn how to optimize mobile social networking through a powerful combination of devices, access and content, according to a new report from Pyramid Research (www.pyr.com).
The Peril and Promise of Mobile Social Networks for Operators provides an overview and context of social networking on mobile phones, as well as how communications patterns are changing. Pyramid Research also examines how developments on the device are being influenced by social networking. There follows a section on how operators are using tariffs to attract users, and how they are changing to avoid cannibalizing voice and text with data. Additionally, the report underlines the importance of operators being able to track the development of communications patterns and highlight how several operators are doing this. Pyramid finally presents case studies of mobile social networking in four European countries: France, Netherlands, Spain and the U.K.
Mobile social networking is enjoying strong growth as Facebook approaches 700 million users worldwide with more than 40 percent, or nearly 300 million, accessing the site through mobile devices. "Social networks have provided mobile operators with additional revenues, driving new users to adopt mobile Internet access and existing users to increase their data usage," says Pyramid Research analyst at large, Jan ten Sythoff. "Non-messaging data revenues are the fastest revenue growth segment for mobile operators, with a 2010-2016 CAGR of almost 15 percent, compared with around 4 percent for messaging and -3 percent for voice," he indicates.
In November 2010 Facebook launched its email service and hopes to become a messaging hub, with all IM, email and SMS conversations in a single place. "It also has the potential to become the central contact center, possibly adding voice and video communication," says Sythoff. "This threatens operators both directly, by impacting their voice and messaging revenues, and indirectly because their brands are overshadowed by social networking brands. Operators therefore need to strike a delicate balance between leveraging the demand for social network mobile access and the threat of social networking cannibalizing their basic suite of services," he adds.
"Pyramid suggests operators clearly track developments in communications patterns in different segments, and so be positioned to make necessary changes to optimize revenue across different communications methods," notes Sythoff. "At the same time, continue to differentiate to capitalize on the growth in mobile social networking by offering innovative devices, tariffs and services and improving the user experience," he says.
The Peril and Promise of Mobile Social Networks for Operators is part of Pyramid Research's Telecom Insider Report Series and is priced at $595. Download the excerpt or purchase the report here. For more information, contact Jarka Justova or Lorena Marani (for those in Latin America).
SOURCE Pyramid Research