5 surprising things we learned from the 2013 Internet Trends report

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The annual Internet Trends report by venture capital firm KPCB highlights how Internet use is changing and the direction it is headed, and the 2013 report by Mary Meeker and Liang Wu is no different. Some of the results were important, but not necessarily surprising, like the continued growth of social media platforms like Tumblr, Twitter, Instagram, and others. But some of the results were a bit more unexpected.

Saudi Arabians love to share way more than AmericansScreen Shot 2013-06-03 at 12.54.04 PM

People from the U.S. aren’t nearly as forthcoming as citizens of other nations. While Saudi Arabians ranked first and Indians ranked second on a poll of “respondents indicating they share ‘everything’ or ‘most things’ online” in May, people from the U.S. ranked fifteen, and only 15 percent of people from the U.S. said they’re prodigious sharers, compared to the global average of 24 percent and the Saudis’ over 60 percent.

So even though plenty of people in the U.S. complain about a culture of over-sharing, this research suggest Americans are downright close-lipped compared to other nations.

When it comes to taxi apps, the Chinese do it right

Screen Shot 2013-06-03 at 12.57.12 PMIn the U.S., taxi apps and services like Uber and ZabKab are paving the way to making hailing a ride less of a hassle, but there are tons of regulatory hold ups, and we’re leagues behind how China is utilizing this market.

There are already Chinese taxi apps that let you bid on drivers, track the taxi that’s coming to you in real time, and use push to talk to say your current location and destination into your mobile and have drivers from various companies hear it. Sure, you might get stuck in a massive Chinese traffic jam after you get in the car, but before that, you’re going to have a much simpler time finding a ride than you will in the States.

The rate of growth for digital information is insane

It’s not surprising that the amount of shareable data people create has grown in a big way over the past decade, as social networks took off and it seemed like everyone ever went Screen Shot 2013-06-03 at 12.27.15 PMonline. 

 But the numbers show almost absurd growth in the amount of digital information created and shared — it grew nine times larger from 2006-2011, and projections indicate that by 2015, people will be creating and sharing 8 zettabytes of information.

And a zettabyte is the absurd measurement that’s equal to 1.1 trillion gigabytes, so that’s a mind-boggling amount of data.

Despite multiple controversies, Snapchat is still killing it 

Snapchat’s issues with making its disappearing photos stay disappeared aren’t really hurting usage. And people are uploading many more Snapchats than they are Instagram photos, though photos uploaded to Facebook take the cake. Screen Shot 2013-06-03 at 12.29.07 PM

Even though your scandalous Snaps can land on gross pages like Snapchat Leaked, and sometimes you might get random porn sent your way, the app is on the rise in a major way. Hopefully its young founders can keep the controversy at bay long enough to truly cement Snapchat as a mobile mainstay, since it’s still very new.



Facebook is successfully monetizing mobile

There’s an idea that FaScreen Shot 2013-06-03 at 1.31.53 PMcebook fails to monetize its mobile arm, but according to the numbers that’s simply not true.

Mobile is both bringing more users to the platform and boosting revenue – and now 30 percent comes from mobile, up 14 percent from when Facebook first started popping up on phones. Sure, there’s always room for improvement, and the initial reaction to mobile experiment Facebook Home wasn’t a monumental triumph, but the notion that mobile is Facebook’s Achilles heel is just plain wrong.

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