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Live from Mobile Innovation Week — Day 2

3 min read

Digital Technology

Today’s guest post is our second Mobile Innovation Week update from Doug Naegele, founder of Doug’s first dispatch from the Toronto event recapped Monday’s conference activities. He sent along this wrapup of Day 2.

The second day of Mobile Innovation Week centered largely around new ideas in messaging. As you might imagine, social media — and its influence on users and content producers — figured prominently in the most interesting panels and conversations.  Key takeaways:

Social is going mobile

When Facebook launched its mobile app in January, less than 10% of its traffic was via mobile phone. Just nine months later, more than 25% of traffic comes from smartphones. Many attendees reported not having visited in months — they only use the mobile app.

A representative of Lavalife, a Canadian online dating social network, spoke to their remarkable rate of mobile adoption. Six years after launch, Lavalife now has as many mobile users as Web users. Even more significant, their entire mobile audience pays a fee for the service, while a good percentage of Web users remain free users.  In this case, mobile is the key to monetization.

Mobile is going social

PayPal is about to introduce a product called TwitPay, in which Twitter users can tweet money to each other. It’s part of the company’s effort to become “the Internet’s monetizaton platform.” TwitPay is due to launch Nov. 3.

Ringtones, the first big mobile moneymaker, is also entering the social sphere as well. There are now ringtones that lead users to download mobile games, based on the music/band of the ringtone. Users then can share their scores with friends in social networks, or activate the phone’s GPS to discover other game players nearby.

There’s no doubt that mobile technology is allowing people to take their social networking with them, with huge adoption rates. It’s the revenue component that’s still up for debate. The discussion on whether Facebook should have charged for its iPhone App was lively, for and against. Everyone did agree, however, that mobile does have one key thing going for it: a built in, one-click billing system. And when you’re a 12 year old talking with your friends on social nets and your folks are paying the bill, that presents a lot of opportunity for mobile entrepreneurs.

Thanks for your great response to my call for questions! Keep them coming by commenting below.