App Revenues Expected to Soar to USD $77 Billion in 2017, while Augmented and Virtual Reality Revenue to Reach USD $120 Billion by 2020: Industry Reports
Location-Based Services will break the marketing mold.
Perhaps one of the most interesting emerging developments is that which will blur the line between being online and offline, beacon technology. Apple’s iBeacon technology has been a pioneer on this front, allowing mobile apps to understand their position on a micro-local scale, and deliver hyper-contextual content to users based on location. The result? Businesses can offer real-time deals based on where they are at any given point in time.
“Imagine you’re walking down a boulevard, hungry, and you receive a notification that your favorite burger spot is offering a great deal – that is what location-based services, such as beacon technology, is allowing businesses to do,” said Al Bannai. “It gives them the ability to reach the right customer, at the right time, and the right location. This is definitely a great tool for businesses, but will also be beneficial to the end-user, as it helps them find what they need, when they need it.”
Small businesses will want a piece of the “app pie”.
Such remarkable developments in technology and the continuous success being realized by major international brands is inspiring small businesses to follow suit and develop apps of their own. According to figures reported by the mobile app publishing platform, Bizness Apps, more than 50% of small business will be looking to create a mobile app next year. Furthermore, by 2017, its expected that more than 268 billion downloads will generate $77 billion worth of revenue for the app industry.
In a market like the UAE, where SMEs represent more than 94% of businesses in the country, this offers the app industry enormous potential.
“If you think of the one device that we rely on all day to keep us connected, it is our smartphone. Consider the possibilities, then, of being able to reach a relevant audience using this valuable instrument,” said Al Bannai. “Small businesses are witnessing the tremendous success of their counterparts and now want a piece of the app pie. And with app creation becoming more affordable every day, the technology is now within reach of most businesses, regardless of size.”
Augmented and Virtual Reality will witness tremendous growth.
Mobile manufacturers such as Samsung and HTC have already starting exploring this space with the Gear VR and VIVE, respectively, but that is only the start to a whirlwind of cutting-edge virtual and augmented reality technologies that will soon hit the market, says Al Bannai.
According to market advisor Digi-Capital, augmented/virtual reality revenue is expected to reach USD $120 billion by 2020, with augmented reality accounting for USD $90 billion and virtual reality accounting for USD $30 billion, and driven largely by the consumer and mobile AR/VR markets.
“There is great interest in this field because of the many different useful applications that augmented and virtual reality could potentially assume – be it entertainment, training, or education,” said Al Bannai. “This takes the mobile experience to another level, enabling people to use their hand-held device to completely immerse themselves in another world, not only as passive observers, but as protagonists of their own digital universe.”