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Middle East Digital Digest Q3 2013

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Also available on the ictQATAR slideshare channel: www.slideshare.net/ictqatar

A quarterly round up of 25 Internet and Technology developments from across the Middle East, as well as wider global developments which may impact (or be of interest) to people in the region. Curated by ictQATAR's Social Impact Manger, Damian Radclife.

Middle East Stories this quarter include: the most popular online activities in the Middle East, how UAE is the Global Smartphone Leader, Social Media Usage during Ramadan, eCommerce Insights and regional insights from the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report.

Wider research includes: how mobile devices driving a return to the living room, uncovering the digital habits of Kenyan youth, evolving Cell Phone Behaviors, Vietnam’s new online censorship law and efforts to connect the next 5 billion online.

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Middle East Digital Digest Q3 2013

  1. 1. Digital Digest 25 recent Internet and Technology developments you may have missed from – and/or potentially impacting on - Qatar and the Middle East Issue 9: Q3 2013 Damian Radcliffe Social Impact Manager Email: dradcliffe@ict.gov.qa Twitter: @damianradcliffe
  2. 2. Executive Summary In a hurry? Our Top 10 takeaways 1. Video, Forums and eCommerce are MENA‟s most popular online activities. 2. Nearly 75% of people in the UAE owns a smartphone. 3. Engagement with brands via social media increases during Ramadan 4. The value of the Middle East‟s online commerce market grew by 29% last year. 5. Whilst the number of people shopping online increased by 65%. 6. MENA users upload around 2 of video every minute on YouTube. 7. shabaka or ".web" in English will become the world's first Arabic top-level domain. 8. 53% of UK audiences regularly multi-task with other media while watching TV. 9. In the US, video calling has tripled since 2011. 10. 1.7bn mobiles were sold in 2012, compared to 350m PCs.
  3. 3. Contents Issue 9: Q3 2013 Slides 1. Recent developments in the MENA region • The most popular online activities in the Middle East • UAE Global Smartphone Leader • Social Media Usage during Ramadan • Networked Society MENA City Index published • eCommerce Insights • In Brief: Content News • In Brief: Social Media News • In Brief: Technology News • Spotlight: Global Competitiveness Report (World Economic Forum) 4-19 5-7 8-10 11 12 13-14 15 16 17 18-19 2. Wider ICT & Society Research • Social Impact: Mobile devices driving a return to the living room • Youth Research: Uncovering the digital habits of Kenyan youth • Emerging Technology: Evolving Cell Phone Behaviors • Internet Governance: Vietnam‟s new online censorship law 20-25 21 22-23 24 25 3. Coming Up – three emerging issues • Social Impact: “Mobile Is Eating The World” • Technology: Machines and humans getting smarter by working together • Internet Governance: Connecting the next 5 billion 26-29 27 28 29
  4. 4. 1. Recent developments in the MENA region Images: http://bit.ly/1bV8y32, http://bit.ly/17hivUO, http://bit.ly/18iIGKy Includes: - The most popular online activities in the Middle East - UAE Global Smartphone Leader - Social Media Usage during Ramadan - Networked Society MENA City Index published - eCommerce Insights - Global Competitiveness Report
  5. 5. 1.1 Video, Forums and eCommerce - most popular online activities in the Middle East (Ipsos MENA) Survey data from 9 countries and 25,928 people Source:http://slidesha.re/12vYrvG
  6. 6. With news consumption increasingly common online
  7. 7. But advertising remains focused on traditional channels. Will advertising spend move to where the attention is?
  8. 8. 1.2 UAE Global Smartphone Leader (Google) Nearly 3/4 people in the UAE owns a smartphone. Usage in South Korea and Saudi Arabia follows close behind - Data compiled by Statista from the results of Google‟s „Our Global Planet‟ survey. Writing for the Spot On PR blog Alexander McNabb dived deeper into the UAE data, noting: • 73% of users had prepaid packages with 85% of users connecting via Wi-Fi rather than the public network. • 77% of smartphone users surveyed accessed the internet at least daily and 66% multiple times per day. 56% had used the Internet on their phones every day in the past week. • Browsing the Internet (76%), email (74%), photo or video sharing (77%) and accessing social networks (70%) were the leading online activities. Image from: http://bit.ly/15g7pdP
  9. 9. Jordanian based mobile app developer, FrootApps, compiled an infographic which identified many of the same behaviors. This included: • frequency of usage • popularity of home based activity (where Wi-Fi is presumably more prevalent) • Texting and Talking account for >50% of daily mobile use
  10. 10. Research from Ipsos showed different penetration figures But the trend – high smartphone penetration – remains constant (NB: This example highlights the challenge of getting accurate data from the region, but general trends e.g. high smartphone penetration in the GCC can still be discerned, as all sources show this.)
  11. 11. 1.3 Social Media Usage during Ramadan (The Online Project) - Brand engagement can increase substantially c.30% - Integrated marketing has higher multiplier effects at this time Brands typically dedicate 20% of their annual media spend to activity during Ramadan. Some spend even more. Source: Gulf News - http://bit.ly/ruhaLE “…people engage with social media at different periods of time during Ramadan…. Brands benefit from the increase in engagement, especially during peak hours, given that the content is entertaining and/or valuable.” http://bit.ly/16ZGeqE http://bit.ly/13xXwxW
  12. 12. 1.4 First Networked Society MENA City Index published (Ericsson) Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Doha are MENA’s most Hi-Tech Cities ViaTfour.me:http://bit.ly/1b8nHi0 "Trends suggest that more than 60 percent of all people in the region will live in cities by 2030. In the future, advances in technology and infrastructure performance will continue to change our lives, as ICT has the potential to help us meet some of our great societal challenges. The report shows high levels of ICT maturity in the MENA region in terms of infrastructure and usage and indicates the untapped opportunities to leverage the socioeconomic benefits." Anders Lindblad, President, Region Middle East and North Africa, Ericsson Via: http://bit.ly/19wAc0a
  13. 13. 1.5 eCommerce in the Middle East New Insights from PayPal and Ipsos Five Key Findings 1. The Middle East‟s online commerce market grew 29% from $7 billion in 2011 to $9 billion in 2012. 2. In 2012, there were over 30 million people shopping online in the Middle East, an increase of 65% from 2011. 3. Predicted that the Middle East‟s online commerce market will be worth $15 billion a year by 2015. 4. Security remains the top concern for consumers. 5. Most transactions are completed on a computer, but mobile transactions account for 10% of e-commerce. Image: http://bit.ly/15EZh7S Charts and Report: http://bit.ly/16O52Q6 Four reasons for market growth: “new consumers purchasing online for the first time; retailers establishing an online presence or increasing the sophistication of their current online opening; a number of major international retailers marketing directly to consumers in the region and finally, the explosive growth of mobile commerce.”
  14. 14. Key Charts Top Online Spending categories in 2012 Top Online MENA merchants (Average spend per online shopper) Size of MENA market
  15. 15. 1.6 In Brief: Content News Image:http://bit.ly/1bAZaBk Wamda reported that Lebanese game developer Game Cooks had seen it‟s mobile word scramble game, reach the Top Five for Word Games in the U.S. App Store and Top Five in the overall Games category in MENA countries including Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the UAE, and Kuwait: http://bit.ly/19dwLxJ The Gulf Times explored the popularity of regional streaming services, given iTunes’ absence from this market in the Middle East (NB: iTunes enjoys 63% market share of MENA music downloads). Companies include France-based Deezer and Morocco-based Yala Music, as well as Lebanon- based Anghami, which has enjoyed two million downloads since it launched in November 2012. The market is estimated to be worth $1.1 billion p.a. in the region. Piracy and illegal downloads are a challenge to its growth: http://bit.ly/18kU3Ao The MENA region contributes around 2 hours out of the 72 hours of video uploaded every minute on YouTube. via Tfour.me - http://bit.ly/1d4WDeT “Do you remember scrabble, the old yet classic word game?! Get ready to meet its cooler cousin: “Scrab it”, a new modern concept for your mobile device.” Image and downloads available via: https://itunes.apple.com/sa/app/scrab-it/id661176587?mt=8
  16. 16. Facebook ads in #Egypt are as a popular as Google ads: http://bit.ly/1d4WDeT 1.7 In Brief: Social Media Highlights Global Voices notes the popularity of a Twitter hashtag, which translates as Take a Picture of Yourself Like a Girl Does. It shows Saudi boys poking fun at girls sharing their pictures on social media: http://bit.ly/14fMN9s LinkedIn revealed that Emirates has become the first global airline to reach 100,000 followers: http://bit.ly/1gRNkko Imagesvia:http://bit.ly/15kHN0p
  17. 17. 1.8 In Brief: Technology News “The Middle East beats the West in female tech founders” reports The Economist, noting that globally 10% of internet entrepreneurs across the world are women, against an average 35% in MENA. http://econ.st/155Iyeh (.shabaka or ".web" in English), will become the world's first Arabic top-level domain (TLD) http://bit.ly/15CtqtY Informa reports that sales of tablets in the region are expected to increase almost fivefold in the next four years, from 6.5 million in 2012 to 32.1 million in 2016. http://bit.ly/16jaDmY Jordan blocks 254 news websites for having no license. During the summer AFP reported sites were blocked “for failing to obtain the necessary licensing,” which followed legislation introduced in 2012. The law included powers to regulate “electronic publications,” with sites having to be registered and licensed. http://bit.ly/16BA98i
  18. 18. 1.9 Global Competitiveness Report (via World Economic Forum) The World Economic Forum has published their latest Global Competitiveness Report which assesses the competitiveness landscape of 148 economies, with a focus on the drivers of productivity and prosperity. A number of countries in the MENA region did well in this index, with the report authors noting: Source: http://bit.ly/15WC6sT (Page 14) “The Middle East and North African region continues to be affected by political turbulence that has impacted individual countries’ competitiveness.… … At the same time, some small, energy-rich economies in the region perform well in the rankings. This underlines the fact that, contrary to the situation found in previous energy price booms, these countries have managed to contain the effects of rising energy prices on their economies and have used the window of opportunity to embark on structural reforms and invest in competitiveness-enhancing measures.” Image: http://bit.ly/18mtgDG
  19. 19. The Index uses 12 Pillars to determine competitiveness including Technological Readiness, which recognizes that “in today’s globalized world, technology is increasingly essential for firms to compete and prosper.” Cited benefits provided by Tech include increased productivity and production processes, daily activities, enabling innovation, and cross-cutting infrastructure. Image: http://bit.ly/1521eLm About the Index
  20. 20. 2. Wider research related to ICT and Society Images: http://bit.ly/19aIwI6, http://bit.ly/19PxpPC, http://bit.ly/16XzVTf Includes: - Mobile devices driving a return to the living room - Uncovering the digital habits of Kenyan youth - Evolving Cell Phone Behaviors - Vietnam’s new online censorship law
  21. 21. 2.1 Social Impact: The domestic digital media hub Tablets and Smartphones driving a return to the living room Ofcom‟s Communications Market Report 2013 revealed that people still coming together to watch TV in the living room – 91% of UK adults view TV on the main set each week. But they often undertake other digital media activity – such as streaming videos, using instant messenger apps or updating their social media status – at the same time. Terminology Watch “Media meshing”‟ – doing something else but related to what they‟re watching on TV. e.g. During the 2013 Wimbledon Men’s tennis final, 1.1 million people tweeted 2.6 million times using hashtags associated with the game. 80% of tweets were from mobile devices. - 25% media mesh weekly ------------------- “Media stacking’ – using smartphones and tablets for completely unrelated activities while watching TV. - 53% regularly multi-task with other media while watching TV Read more: http://bit.ly/1cqUA7l
  22. 22. 2.2 Youth Research: new UNICEF report published Uncovering the digital habits of Kenyan youth UNICEF has published a report which looked at how young people in Kenya use ICT. The report noted that young people don’t differentiate between mobile and Internet use, instead viewing it as an integrated digital experience which enables them to meet new people, access entertainment-related content and learn about new things of interest. Read more: http://bit.ly/13STkGP Popular activities online include: • socializing and chatting using social media platforms and chat forums, • accessing audio/video content, playing games, and • searching for information on topics ranging from sports, entertainment, fashion, dating and love lives to academic subjects and gossip. In terms of developing skills to be safe online, young people prefer to learn from people like them.
  23. 23. Cyberbullying or receiving hurtful messages was common. Respondents usually just delete such messages or block the sender. They seldom tell an adult. qnrct16bit.ly/http://Image: All charts are taken from the report.
  24. 24. 2.3 Technology: Evolving Cell Phone Behaviors 50% of US cell owners download apps to their phones 48% listen to music services + video calling triples since 2011 Research at: http://bit.ly/14Wxd55 Images via: http://bit.ly/18e4Egg With 91% of US adults owning a mobile phone, new data from the Pew Research Center shows how over the past four years phone owners are increasingly likely to use their mobile for activities such as getting directions, listening to music or video calling.
  25. 25. 2.4 Internet Governance Vietnam’s new online censorship law attracts criticism Decree 72 bans bloggers and users of social media from quoting, gathering, or summarizing information from press organizations or government websites, reports the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). Designed to uphold "national security," Vietnamese authorities also claim it will help combat online copyright infringement. Image:http://bit.ly/192czf3 Critics of the decree included the Asia Internet Coalition (which includes eBay, Facebook, Google, and Yahoo!): “It is unfortunate that the Vietnamese government has decided to take a restrictive policy approach towards the management of the internet…. In the long term, the Decree will stifle innovation and discourage businesses from operating in Vietnam, thereby hindering Vietnam's goal to establish itself as an advanced competitive ICT nation.” Statement via: http://bit.ly/171VfsV Read more: http://bit.ly/18SUiBl and http://wapo.st/16rAhly According to Reporters Without Borders, 35 bloggers and other online critics have been jailed in Vietnam in 2013. The Washington Post noted this means that “about 20 percent of the world's imprisoned bloggers this year have been Vietnamese”. Whilst, the Elite Daily website called it “The Strictest Online Censorship We‟ve Ever Seen.”
  26. 26. 3. Emerging Issues Images: http://gtnr.it/1aEbJZc, http://bit.ly/16YFuRo, http://bit.ly/15FrJGY, Includes: - “Mobile Is Eating The World” - Machines and humans getting smarter by working together - Connecting the next 5 billion
  27. 27. 3.1 Social Impact: “Mobile Is Eating The World” Benedict Evans‟ presentation outlines the impact on the PC and Mobile Industries of tablet and smartphone take up, and the impact on Internet usage. In this environment he refers to “the role of content as a competitive weapon”. Source: http://slidesha.re/1gVFSES How mobile is changing our relationship with the Internet.
  28. 28. 3.2 Emerging Technology: Top trends of 2013 (Gartner) Machines and humans getting smarter by working together The 2013 edition of Gartner's long-running Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies identifies the three biggest emerging technological trends, as well as technologies which are overhyped. The Top 3 1) Augmenting humans with technology e.g. an employee with a wearable computing device; 2) Machines replacing humans e.g. a cognitive virtual assistant acting as an automated customer representative; and 3) Humans and machines working alongside each other e.g. a mobile robot working with a warehouse employee to move boxes. Technologies at the overhyped stage – shown on the chart in the “Peak of Inflated Expectations” segment include "big data", consumer 3D printing, gamification, and wearable user interfaces. Mobile health monitoring, NFC and cloud computing reside in the “Trough of Disillusionment”. wSu1605zd.net/http://Source:
  29. 29. 3.3 Internet Governance: Connecting the next 5 billion The Founder members are: Facebook, Ericsson, MediaTek, Nokia, Opera, Qualcomm and Samsung. Efforts will include lobbying, developing new business models and focusing on mobile and reducing the data needed by apps and other online tools. Press release: http://bit.ly/17IUNP5 New York Times article: http://nyti.ms/19bvtGb Mark Zuckerberg announces a global partnership – Internet.org Critics argued that the move is being driven by a search for new markets, or that the developing world has more pressing needs. e.g. Time: Three Reasons Zuckerberg’s “Internet For All” Crusade Rings Hollow - http://ti.me/19yeNER The move follows the launch of “Project Loon” by Google (featured ) which uses balloons to help fill coverage gaps.8Digest Noin The New York Times noted that Zuckerberg acknowledged this but that he felt: “if you can afford a phone, I think it would be really good for you to have access to the Internet.” “We’re focused on it more because we think it’s something good for the world… rather than something that is going to be really amazing for our profits.”
  30. 30. Thank you for reading. Comments, suggestions and feedback for future digests are welcome. Visit: http://www.slideshare.net/ictQATAR/ for Volumes 1-8. Previous editions: Middle East Digital Digest, Issue 8: Q2 2013 (English, Arabic) Middle East Digital Digest, Issue 7: Q1 2013 (English, Arabic) Social Media in the MENA – 2012 Review: Jan 2013 (English, Arabic) Middle East Digital Digest, Issue 5: Nov/Dec 2012 (English, Arabic) Middle East Digital Digest, Issue 4: Sept/Oct 2012 (English, Arabic) Middle East Digital Digest, Issue 3: August 2012 (English, Arabic) Middle East Digital Digest, Issue 2: July 2012 (English, Arabic) Middle East Digital Digest, Issue 1: June 2012 (English, Arabic) Disclaimer: All content in these slides is in the public domain and referenced so that you can read the original sources. Any omissions, errors or mistakes are mine, and mine alone. Damian Radcliffe, Social Impact Manager Email: dradcliffe@ict.gov.qa Twitter: @damianradcliffe Tel: +974 44993612