Monday, May 12, 2008

Key facts about youth and mobile - May 2008

The slide set is viewable on slideshare courtesy of our friends at Mobile Youth who happen to do a terrific report on mobile youth. There are some juicy facts and figures in there so it's well worth a look. And in the meantime, I have chosen a few here to share with you along with some of my thinking on their relevance.
  • If you think that mobile youth isn't significant, then think again. 2.6 billion people in the world are under 30 and that is greater than the population of India and China combined.

  • 1.1 billion under 30s own a mobile phone and this is growing at a furious rate of just under 100,000 a year. I'm guessing this is faster than the rate of growth of broadband in this age-group. With the added benefit that mobile is very personal, whereas, typically, broadband usage on PC may be in a shared environment at college or on a family PC.

  • 10% of a young person's disposable income is spent on mobile products and services. This includes calls, texts, the phone itself and other data and entertainment products. Bear in mind, this market didn't exist 10 years ago in the youth sector. Pay as you go phones only really took off in the mainstream in the UK and Europe in 1999 and 2000. Which, incidentally, is when ringtones started hitting the mainstream.

  • By 2010 (only 2 years away), it's predicted that young people will spend $300 billion on mobile products and services, of which a third will be on mobile data. So voice is still the major revenue centre for mobile network operators and will be for the foreseeable future.

  • By 2012 (only 4 years away), 500 million Indian youth will own a mobile phone. That kinda dwarves the growth potential in Europe and the US in terms of volume at least. It will also be interesting to see how lucrative this market is as the Indian economy grows. Traditionally Indian mobile companies have been focussed on the rest of the world to drive revenues, but maybe it's time to focus on customers a bit closer to home?

  • The average Japanese 25 year old spends $100 a month on mobile. That's a lot of money that previously might have been spent on music, going out, smoking, drinking or fashion.

  • The lifetime value of a young mobile consumer is $28,000. But they're highly brand promiscuous and have little loyalty to their network operator. And by age 35, the lifetime value of data spend of a young consumer has already halved. So the advice is to get them young and retain those customers.

As Tony Robbins might say 'hmm, something to think about'.