Mobile Social Media Users to Reach 650m in 2011 Rising to 1.3bn in 2016

A new report from Juniper Research finds that the continuing increase in smartphone adoption and the rise of geosocial networking will push the number of mobile social media users from 650 million this year to 1.3 billion by 2016; more than the total number of social media users on all platforms today.

The report found that the growing trend to integrate social, local and mobile experiences is driving the geosocial phenomena. People want to find out not only what their friends are doing, but also their location and other available activities in the area. Geosocial networks are particularly suited to the mobile space as most smartphones now include GPS, and have an ‘always on, always connected’ experience.

The mobile dating market is also embracing geosocial. Location and instant messaging are the driving forces behind a number of successful services, particularly those targeted at younger demographics who consider these to be key features. The mobile dating market is expected to be worth $2.3 billion by 2016, up from $1 billion this year.

According to report author Charlotte Miller, “Location features on smartphones are opening up a new side of both dating and social networking. Adding location features to a service makes the service local to the user. This will be a key feature for mobile dating services — why send emails to someone hundreds of miles away when you can exchange instant messages with someone only hundreds of meters away?”

Other key findings from the report include: Spend on advertising targeted at tablets is expected to account for almost half of total mobile social media advertising spend by 2016; On a regional basis, Far East & China will continue to account for the lion’s share of mobile social media revenues, followed by North America.

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