Yesterday’s big news out of the CTIA show — that the U.S. is now ahead of Europe in terms of mobile adoption and consumption — made me do a virtual double take. Anyone who has traveled abroad or follows telecom even remotely knows how advanced European and Asian consumers and businesses have been in terms of mobile usage.

It also set me wondering how much of a role social media plays in driving the American surge — which brought to mind this fantastic Fred Wilson quote, via Brian Solis:

    “I can’t remember who said it but at least I remember what was said: The three current big megatrends in the Web/tech sector are mobile, social, and real-time. I like to think of this as the golden triangle … The iPhone is the poster child of mobile. Facebook is the poster child of social. Twitter is the poster child of real-time. But it is what happens inside the golden triangle that is really interesting to me.”

All three poster children, of course, are U.S. companies.

And the growth doesn’t look like it’s stopping anytime soon. According to, “In the U.S., mobile social networkers will total 56.2 million by 2013, accounting for 45% of the mobile Internet user population.” It doesn’t take stats, though, to recognize that social networking is one of the fastest-growing activities among mobile users. Just look at our own habits: The instinct of smartphone users to upload to Facebook newly captured photos is practically knee-jerk.

But enough out of us — let’s hear from you.

Do you think that social media is driving developments in mobile? Are you demanding more out of your phone for social-networking purposes?

We welcome novice and expert opinions alike.

Image Credit, HelleM, via iStock

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5 responses to “Is social media driving mobile ahead?”

  1. There is no doubt that the ability to do social media via mobile Web is a major reason new people jump in. The stat that mobile Facebook users are on for 27min/day vs desktop users @ 24min/day says a lot.

    However, let's not start making our Oscar acceptance speech as King of the World just yet. Isn't monthly spend (ARPU) a function of pricing? And, if something is more expensive in one place, wouldn't the monthly spend look higher in that place for the same amount of goods sold? Let's not brag just because we've agreed to pay more.

    Lastly, couldn't adoption rate be a function of things being so bad for so long, then getting better quickly? That alone doesn't make the US better absolutely, just in that time frame. Put another way, infants get taller by 100% in 18 months, but that doesn't make then taller than teenagers, who might get taller by 10% in 18 months.

    Let's really look at the underlying data to see what it all means.

  2. On demanding more of one's mobile phone… when my computer crashes, bummer. But if my phone crashes or I lose it, now that's an emergency.

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