2016.09.09 Last Week in Digital Media

While I was away:

  • Facebook shared an intention to go after search dollars during their quarterly earnings call. This is not about Facebook becoming a search engine, but rather search-like ad products e.g. Lead Ads, which feature product inventory.
  • eMarketer reports that Snapchat has 58.6M US users this year, with double-digit growth expected to continue. The article also has a handy timeline of Snapchat’s product roadmap.
  • In the world of mobile, Pew published some interesting research showing that American’s who rely on smartphone only for internet access now sits at around 13% (up 5pts from 2 years ago).
  • WhatsApp (aka Facebook) updated their usage terms to now include the right to share information between WhatsApp and Facebook. If you have accepted the new terms, you have 30 days to opt-out. Learn how here.

Now onto the more recent news:

  • The iPhone 7 was announced. There’s been some talk that the lack of hardware updates means we’ve reached peak Smartphone. That’s only partly true, we’re really closer to peak Smartphone Hardware. The real innovation over the next few years will be Software (intelligent assistants, chat bots, AI, home automation, etc).
    The Software innovation will revolutionize media for our clients and it’s Software that will drive device upgrades (more sophisticated software needs more powerful silicon).  On a side note, if you have an older iPhone and want a iPhone 7, check this out.
  • According to Fortune, Snapchat IPO plans are gathering pace. This is actually relevant for agencies and clients, because as a public company there will be increased pressure for Snapchat to monetize their platform. eMarketer predicts Snapchat is on track for $1B in revenue by next year.
  • For clients with Android Apps, Google is about to add a second ad unit to the Google Play store. The second slot is for non-branded broad queries. Something to keep at the back of your mind for app download campaigns.
  • In all of the iPhone 7 hype, you may have missed the news that Amazon released a new Kindle Fire HD that will include Alexa (the Amazon Echo assistant). Continuing the march of voice search becoming the new battleground. It also underscores my comment earlier about software, the addition of Alexa is the real news not the hardware.

Have a great week.