Welcome To The Best Industry Analysis in Tech
Nakono's analyst team produces the most insightful and powerful technology industry research available - bar none.
We do not produce bland, consensus research that nobody can disagree with - and consequently conveys nothing useful, nor do we churn out useless research simply because we have to meet page count quotas.
Further, we do not use machines to write reports, we do not outsource research work and we do not copy or re-purpose the work of others - all tactics used by some others to boost their production volume. And finally, we don't sanitize our research findings to protect client relationships.
Instead, based on a solid foundation of facts, data and advanced analytical thinking by very experienced analysts, Nakono can be relied upon to deliver clear, genuinely insightful and – where necessary – hard-hitting analysis.
While our conversational writing style makes for easy, enjoyable reading, make no mistake: we deliver serious analysis and powerful insights and we guarantee that you will learn something important from every report, including those which cover your own field.
Many research providers claim to offer 'thought leadership' but Nakono is one step ahead: our track record over 10 years is proof that we that actually deliver thought leadership.
With 15 BRAND NEW report titles planned for the next 12 months (below), 2016 is shaping up to be a great vintage:
Products, uses and market potential
Hailed by some as the future of manufacturing, but slated by others as little more than a niche market for hobbyists, what is the true potential of 3D printing? This report segments the 3D printing market into 10 key market application areas.
This report showcases a startling range of manufacturing innovations that are being enabled by 3D printing technology Also included in an analysis of the main forces driving the market as will as the main barriers. The report also analyses how in the future the steadily increasing performance of 3D printers and 3D scanning will create ?a whole new category of copyright problems that will affect sectors like art, toys and film.
Pages: 50 (approx)
Available: Updated May 2016
At last - a clear explanation of what separates dumb computers from intelligent machines
When pressed, most software engineers will admit that they do not really understand how AI can be real intelligence, or even how to recognize whether AI is present, or not.
For people who have spent their entire careers working with logic and known outcomes the idea that their programs can be used to build truly intelligent machines seems rather unsettling.
If experts like these are struggling then what hope for other groups - like journalists, industry executives, regulators and policy makers?
Meanwhile, the leading players - Google, IBM, Microsoft, Facebook and Apple are racing off into the distance.
We therefore see an opportunity to help fill a major gap between the consensus view of what AI is, and what AI actually is.
Using a new approach we have generated a range of major insights that have allowed us to answer the most important questions in the field of AI in a new way which is clearer, simpler and more compelling than before, for example:
- How can a computer that is based on logical programs ever be genuinely intelligent?
- What is the difference between a dumb computer and an intelligent machine?
- Is the intelligence of a machine limited by the intelligence of those who created it?
- Is machine intelligence different in nature to human intelligence?
Available: June 2016
Job enhancement, job creation and job destruction
Here we present an analysis of how artificial intelligence (AI) will change the worldwide employment market. It is now clear that AI will enhance some jobs while creating completely new jobs. But it is also clear that AI will destroy jobs as well.
This report is focused on understanding the likely net impact of AI on the employment market, when that impact will be felt and which jobs will be most affected. Rather than getting bogged down in a heavyweight economic analysis of how prior technological revolutions have affected the job market - an approach that has questionable relevance in this case - this report uses a projection of where AI technology will be in 30 years to develop a rich narrative that illustrates how the employment market in the future could operate by including a mixture of human intelligence and artificial intelligence.
Pages: 50 (approx)
50 ways AI is being used to reduce costs and increase revenues
Putting to one side the role played in sci-fi movies, the term 'Artificial Intelligence' or just 'AI' tends to be associated with human vs. machine contests - which have taken the form of chess matches and quiz shows, grandiose projects that aim to replicate human intelligence or as part of a dystopian narrative where we all lose our jobs to robots.
But the reality of modern AI is very different. For one thing the virtual tentacles of AI already reach into almost every nook and cranny or our digital lives – everywhere, in fact, where there is a lot of data, and that's most places these days. But the AIs that exist today are simply analytical models that have been created by data analysts, sometimes using a drag-and-drop user interface, who are trying to answer questions that are far too complex for a spreadsheet or custom program to handle. Traditional data modelling and programming approaches demand that the analyst understands how to solve the problem – before they start. But when the problem becomes too complex and there is no way for anyone to understand how to solve the problem then data analysts are forced to build AI-based models.
Whether it is a telecoms operator who can trace an intermittent fault to the configuration of a software component on a network server or a hospital that is using a machine to identify melanomas, AI is already being used in multiple ways in practically every industry – especially those that are rich in information data.
This report vividly illustrates the diverse ways in which companies are using AI today while also suggesting a range of applications which will become feasible in the near future as artificially intelligent machines become more powerful and easier to use.
Pages: 50 (approx)
Updated: Sep 2015
A practical review of what the leading players in AI are offering
Professional data analysts - and even programmers who lack a formal data science training - can today gain access to extremely powerful AI-based cloud services that can help with problems that are far too complex to solve using simple spreadsheet regression or even custom programs.
The threshold at which AI becomes a viable tool for data analysis is a lot lower than you might think:
For example, you might have details on 50,000 individuals who have signed up on your website. Each user might have a history of usage over 12 months. Some will have posted comments, some might have purchased products, some will have shared items on your site and they will all access the content of your website differently. Your job is to develop an application that can reliably identify the users who are likely to convert from visitors to customers - so they can be treated differently.
Already this problem is far beyond the capabilities of any spreadsheet-based regression analysis: quite apart from the volume of data involved, the number of variables, potential combinations of variables and their relative importance is completely undefined – so it is not even possible to write a special program to do the analysis.
The only way to deal with this problem is to build an AI-based model. Cloud-based AI services like Microsoft Azure Machine Learning and Amazon Machine Learning can be very low cost: the total cost for the type of problem described here might be just a few hundred dollars.
This non-technical report provides an introduction to the field of cloud-based AI by describing what the leading vendors are doing in the field of AI, what products they have and how they compare. The report also delivers powerful insights into how today's generation of cloud-based AI products will evolve.
Updated: Jul 2015
New tech, stunning demos, marquee investors and eye-watering startup valuations mean change is coming
Demonstrations of Augmented Reality (AR) technology have in the past mostly involved crude-looking text overlays which are projected using glasses onto the wearer's field of view. An example would be where the name of a person floats above their head or where a flashing arrow appears suggesting a right turn. And such use cases are very likely to play a role in the AR market in the future.
But two key developments in 2015 have redefined what AR might be able to accomplish, as well as causing us to reconsider how large the AR market could become.
The first development was Microsoft's demonstration of HoloLens in Jan-15. The second occurred when news broke in Dec-15 of the unprecedented USD 827 million Series C investment that was being sought by the low-profile AR startup, Magic Leap. Not only would this investment value a 5-year old company that has no product, no customers, no users and no revenue at around $3.7 billion, but it would redefine the popular conception of what can be accomplished with venture capital.
This report clearly explains the pros and cons of the two different technological approaches being used by Microsoft and Magic Leap. The report also presents an analysis of how this new kind of AR technology will greatly expand the number of use cases and, therefore, the ultimate size of the AR market. You will also find a forecast for the size of the AR market based on projected expenditure by enterprises and consumers.
Pages: 50 (approx)
Making economic sense of the most intangible part of the digital economy
Although big data is one of the most poorly understood aspects of the digital economy, the reality is that it is the most valuable part.
Indeed, it could be argued that 'data' is ultimately the only valuable part. After all, the entire internet – connected devices, broadband access lines, network infrastructure, software, cloud services and more – exists to collect, analyse and distribute intangible data. And given that any practical question can be answered by analysing the right data in the right way then it seems clear that more data means more answerable questions and more value creation – at least in principle.
This report looks at the Big Data problem in fours ways: data collection, data analysis, value extraction and practical application. The report includes forecasts for the volume of data that will require analysis in the future, insights on how that data will be analysed and an 'application template' which will allow executives to best understand where in their organisation they will be able to apply Big Data concepts to increase revenues and/or reduce cost.
Pages: 50 (approx)
Silicon Valley produces more tech start-ups than China, but China produces more computer science graduates
Whatever financial metric one selects, it is clear that the Chinese tech start-up market is booming.
While concerns about the Chinese macro economy will likely reduce the amount of capital available to fund new ventures, it will not affect the underlying raw material, which amounts to large numbers of science and engineering graduates and a culture which is both entrepreneurial and fiercely competitive.
This report lifts the lid on the Chinese start-up scene by reviewing the main regional hubs and incubators and a selection of Chinese 'Unicorns' and hot start-ups.
Updated: Jul 2015
Analysis and forecasts for the five ways of connecting a TV set to the internet
It is clear that practically all TV sets will one day be connected to the Internet, at least in markets that have mature internet infrastructure. But the journey towards that goal is proving long and hard and only a few of the myriad contending product concepts have what it takes to last the distance.
For instance, after taking two wrong turns Microsoft has pretty much given up on connected TV altogether. The company's first effort, WebTV, was based on an assumption that we would all want to access the web on our TV sets (we didn't, and the service was closed in Sep-13). The company tried again with Windows Media Center which had a clunky user interface and offered minimal content (support for this product was withdrawn in Jan-15). Yahoo's effort was called 'Yahoo Connected TV' but this was a copy of Microsoft's failed WebTV concept and failed to go anywhere very interesting. In 2010, Google took a shot at the connected TV market with a product that assumed we'd want a search box on our TV sets which would allow us to search for TV shows and movies like we search for web content (this is partly true but Google TV was premature, executed poorly and later slated by partners as a 'disaster').
In parallel, manufacturers of games consoles and standalone Blu-ray players started adding internet connectivity plus TV shows and movie content as well. And as soon as the cost of adding internet connectivity to TV sets fell to about $200, TV set vendors began offering 'Smart TV' sets. Finally, Apple, Roku and many others offer a range of consumer devices that allow TV sets to be connected to the internet.
This reports looks at the entire connected TV market in order to define where the market currently is and how each of the different connectivity methods are being used. The report also offers analysis of which connectivity methods will prevail, and which will not.
Updated: Oct 2014
Lying somewhere between quirky and unsettling, this new market has high potential
Comprising experimental products like Siri (Apple), Cortana (Microsoft), Now (Google), Echo (Amazon), plus others, the personal assistant segment is set to become a permanent feature of the digital economy, although perhaps not in the way you think.
This report profiles the leading products and use cases, both today and in the future. The size of the personal assistant market is defined in terms of the current and projected active user base. The report also paints a tantalising picture of where this emerging market is headed in the future.
Pages: 50 (approx)
Although a highly technical field, the global healthcare sector has been slow to adopt digital technology, but that is changing.
With patient lives on the line it is understandable that the global health care industry has been a late adoptor of digital technology. Tight regulation is essential, which means change takes time. But things are changing.
Starts ups who are collecting DNA samples using $100 swab kits think they can use their data to enter the drug development market. Leading cancer hospitals are using machine learning to identify melanomas more accurately than consultant dermatologists. Wearable technologies that can measure and report key bio parameters in real time promise to transform clinical diagnosis.
Meanwhile, artificially-intelligent 'doctors' - which are already on the verge of passing medical school entrance exams - could be used to deliver advanced healthcare services to billions of people in developing markets using a smartphone app. This report looks at the key segments of the global healthcare market which could be positively transformed by the use of mature digital technologies.
Pages: 50 (approx)
All the leading services lose money. But that can change, and here's how
Household names like Napster, Apple, Spotify and Deezer and Pandora have two things in common. The first is that they offer streaming music services using a mixture of ad-supported and paid models. The second is that none have ever made a cent of profit. This is not due to incompetent execution, but structural factors which apply for the whole digital music streaming segment.
By carefully analysing the source of these sector-wide 'profit removal' factors as well as the leading players in the space this report presents a clear analysis of what needs to happen to stop the red in flowing and for the profits to start showing.
Updated: Apr 2015
Mapping the fast-developing digital payments landscape
The payments industry has for many years been controlled by a relatively small number of powerful banking concerns and bank-centric commercial card schemes.
But the rapid growth of online retailing and the proliferation of advanced, connected devices is creating new opportunities - for incumbents players but also increasingly-powerful newcomers such as Apple, Facebook and Google.
This reports focuses on the part of the payments market where old meets new. The report profiles the most innovative and transformational products and initiatives within the payments sector and presents an analysis of the size of the payments market split by PC and personal device.
Pages: 50 (approx)
From embarrassing tests on deserted airfields to mass deployment
The mass deployment of driverless cars will transform the worldwide automotive industry on a staggering scale. A 80-90% reduction in the cost of accident-related deaths, injuries and vehicle damage will decimate the $460 billion personal car insurance market while the automotive spare parts and car repairs markets will experience major contraction. A slow but sure move away from the concept of car ownership towards a model that involves paying for transport services will mean that annual cars sales will fall. This will not just affect the leading auto makers, who will experience of period of consolidation and M&A activity, but related industries will be affected as well - such as companies who provide finance for new car purchases.
This report will take you on a guided tour of the driverless car and driver-assisted car markets. The report explains what all the major actors are doing and where they are headed while also presenting a detailed description of what the future will look like when the thought of driving a car to work will seem as strange as the thought of lighting a fire in order to cook a meal.
Available: 5 Feb 2016
Will the ultimate candidate for creative destruction prove the most resistant?
This report identifies and analyses the 10 areas of finance that will be transformed by technology in the coming years.
Here you will find an analysis and sizing of emerging segments such as virtual currencies, crowd funding & financing, mobile banking, information and analytical services, micro finance, disruption to transactional finance and others.
This report includes profiles of 20 prominent FinTech start-ups which are challenging the industry status quo and includes answers to strategic questions such as what is the minimum required size of the finance industry, how close is today's industry to that ideal, what role technology will play in 'right sizing' the finance industry and how successful will the industry's current powerbrokers be in resisting change.
Pages: 50 (approx)
The world's primary measure of growth is largely irrelevant for the most important part of economy.
The engine of the digital economy is the technology used to deliver finished digital services to businesses and consumers.
Comprising connected devices, broadband infrastructure, cloud software, internet-based services and many other markets, the societal benefits that this technology delivers is measured by proxy, by adding up the total spending by businesses and consumers on finished digital products and services.
Our analysis is that the digital economy could already account for 20% of the real value delivered by the global economy, which is dramatically different to the consensus view which is that the digital economy currently accounts for just 5% of global GDP.
This report provides a clear explanation and compelling examples and analysis for why the value benefits delivered by the digital economy cannot be correctly measured by using conventional economic measures such as spending by consumers or businesses.
Updated: June 2016
No other tech company is innovating in as many areas, or taking as many risks. Where is Google going, and is that a problem?
Of the handful of large companies driving the digital economy, it is Google that has the most expansive vision for the future and is driving hardest towards it, but a deeply-embedded culture of innovation has meant there have been more than a few accidents along the way – and that will continue to be the case.
It is normal for publicly-traded companies of Google's scale and vintage to settle down into the usual pattern where management attention is focused on managing analysts and investors who are mainly interested in the next quarter's results, rather than product concepts that will not generate meaningful revenue for years. Google is a rare exception to this rule because the company routinely takes risks developing new products or trying to create new markets that are not just highly speculative but span a staggeringly broad area.
But while it is hard to fault Google's culture of innovation, the company's practices, aspirations and technology roadmap raise serious questions about how powerful Google could become and even whether it has already effectively transcended regulation.
This report analyses Google in detail by reviewing the company's myriad product segments and by reviewing all of the company's major product segments.
Updated: May 2014
Making existing tasks easier and enabling use cases that were previously impossible
Sometimes we become so conditioned with how a product is used that we find it hard to imagine anything else. Initial scepticism of self-driving car technology is one example where extreme familiarity and habitual behaviour can bias our assessment of something that is radically different. Another example – the subject of this research – concerns the way we interact with computers, which presently involves the use of a keyboard, mouse and touchpad.
In the future, when we look back, we will wonder how we ever managed with such a crude and limiting user interface. Based partly on ongoing research in leading academic and industry R&D labs, as well as our own unique insights this report takes the reader step by step on a journey from the mouse-keyboard computer interface that is pervasive today to a future which looks very different.
Available: 10 Mar 2016
A vivid picture of how technology will one day reside within, not just on, the body
Wireless earbuds, electronic contact lenses, ingestible bio sensors and nanobots that affix themselves to pathogens in the blood supply are all examples of products that scientists, engineers and entrepreneurs are working to bring to market. But while the perception is that these technologies belong to the far-away future, the reality is that some are commercially available today.
This report presents a stunning analysis of a range of implantable technologies as they exist today, and projects where these technologies might end up in the future.
Pages: 50 (approx)
Removing the hype from the most over-hyped trend in tech
The Internet of Things (IoT) is too vague a concept to be regarded as a market or even viewed as a whole industry. This means that there is little point trying to draw the market structure or value chain. Instead, the IoT refers to a multi-market, multi-industry technology trend, rather like 'nanotechnology' or perhaps even 'globalization'.
If we view the Internet as a single technological structure which includes all connected devices, access networks, network hardware and software, data transport pipes and cloud services then the IoT includes all of this, plus what is needed to achieve perfect connectivity, perfect data collection and perfect data distribution.
This report offers an extremely clear analysis of the value of the IoT today and in the future. The report also 'brings the IoT to life' by providing numerous examples of the products, services and use cases that will be enabled as a result of increasingly perfect connectivity.
Updated: Nov 2014
Analysis of the mobile ad value chain, key players and profiles of the mobile ad market in 15 countries worldwide
Mobile advertising involves delivering advertisements to connected personal devices. In developed internet markets the two most important devices are presently smartphones and tablets. In developing internet markets featurephones remain an important device type.
While mobile ads could originally only be served on websites that had to be developed specially for mobile devices – a problem that damaged the market's potential – the capabilities of modern smartphones and tablets along with the latest web development techniques now mean that a web server will know what type of device is requesting a given page so it can send a page that has been optimised for that type of device.
Meanwhile, the screen quality and computational performance of most smartphones and tablets means that text ads, static display ads, animated ads and video ads can be simultaneously served on one mobile page with as high a quality level as that which is possible on PCs.
However, because users are now spending most of their mobile screen time within apps, rather than using their mobile browser, an important part of the mobile ad market now involves serving ads with mobile apps, although this is only possible if the app developer signs up for either AdSense (Google/Android) or iAds (Apple/iOS).
Including forecasts, company profiles and country-level analysis, this report presents a detailed analysis of the worldwide mobile advertising market.
Updated: Mar 2013
How the growth of mobile is undoing and redoing the entire digital ad space
Just 10 years ago, way back in 2005, advertising on mobile phones was still experimental and largely irrelevant to the advertising industry. At this time iPhone and Android were still two years away and Nokia and Blackberry controlled an embryonic smartphone market where worldwide vendor shipments totalled just 48.5 million units.
But in 2015, the technological capabilities of modern personal devices mean that advertisers can achieve the same quality and analytical reporting with mobile as they can with PCs. Add to this the fact that smartphone vendors will ship 1,400 million units worldwide in 2015. This changes everything. On top of this the last 10 years have seen the emergence of the modern tablet and, most recently, smart watches as completely new categories of personal device.
In parallel with the unprecedented growth in the personal device market we have seen the emergence of Facebook and Google as the world's two most visited websites, who also operate the world's two largest digital ad platforms which together account for 55% of all online ad expenditure.
Today, advertisers are allocating an increasing proportion of their digital ad budgets to mobile and less to PCs. It is clear that mobile advertising is now a proven ad media, but one which is still many years from maturity.
This report presents hard-hitting and comprehensive analysis of the major factors that are shaping the worldwide mobile advertising market.
Pages: 50 (approx)
The 2 billion who earn less than $5.00 a day will remain offline for decades
With the smartphone market now approaching saturation in all developed internet economies, attention is now turning to developing and emerging economies. The bottom line is will mobile really go all the way – that is, will everyone really have mobile, one day?
We estimate that at the end of 2015 a total of 2.6 billion individuals were active smartphone users. Given that the worldwide population at the end of 2015 was 7.3 billion then this implies a penetration level of 2.6/7.3 billion, or 35.6%. This is the narrative used by those who believe that practically everyone will have a smartphone, one day.
Nakono’s position is different: based on 2015 figures our analysis is that the long-term addressable market for mobile is around 4.1 billion, not 7.3 billion and the poorest 2 billion may never have mobile internet – where ‘never’ means many decades.
Available: 17 May 2016
Naysayers keep predicting an implosion. But nobody at Netflix is listening, and nor are the company’s users.
Netflix is already by far the largest television service provider in the world. With a strong position in a still-growing market and a profitable business model, the company's positioning could hardly be better.
Not only that, Netflix's pioneering approach of investing in own-branded, original content – much of which has attracted critical acclaim – is redefining what over-the-top (OTT) internet television service providers are supposed to do. Once perceived as mainly an aggregation play, Netflix and others are turning OTT into something far more interesting, while also posing a more serious threat to incumbent actors in the TV industry.
This report offers a detailed analysis of one of the most distinctive and highest-profile companies in the digital media landscape today. Complete with comprehensive analysis of the company's financial operating data, market forecasts and a hard-hitting, crystal clear analysis, the report delivers a wealth of insights.
Pages: 50 (approx)
An analysis of the problems and solutions and what the industry will look like in the future
Including both PC-based and mobile advertising, the concept of online advertising continues to have huge potential. But the online advertising industry has over-executed – and that includes Google and Facebook. Too many market participants have been mesmerised by the capabilities of digital technology and have succumbed to the magnetic pull of the easy money that can be made by deploying a range of 'revenue-maximisation' tricks on unwitting advertisers – tricks like auto reloads, ad stuffing, hidden ads and many more.
And in the frenzied race to the cash, the needs of users have been long forgotten. It is ironic that digital marketers – who take pride in their 'customer first' manta – have wilfully ignored how their ad campaigns are regarded by their target audiences. They seem to measure everything about their campaigns, except what users think of them. Today, mass installations of ad-blockers proves that users think there are too many digital ads, and there is too much bad digital advertising. Frankly, an uncomfortably large percentage of digital advertising today could be described as ad-SPAM.
There is also too far much ad-fraud: we are aware of one major European ad market where ad networks and publishers have agreed to not even discuss the topic of fraud – because it accounts for 40% of their revenues. This is clearly unsustainable.
In this report we lift the lid on where the online advertising industry is today by taking a cold hard look at the problems and what the industry is doing to fix the mess. The report also presents a detailed analysis of the key thematic trends that will shape the online advertising industry over the coming years.
Updated: Nov 2015
We all know the market is smaller than the consensus, because it includes fraud and unseen or useless ads
Here are just a few examples of how the value of the online advertising market is being inflated by dubious practices or fraud: auto reloading (where an ad is auto-replaced with another and another...), invisible ads (where the ad unit defined by the advertiser is never served), below-the-fold ads (where ads are served far below the point where the page content ends), fake websites (where the visitors are zombie computers) and fake traffic (where a publisher sells inventory to an intermediary who then fills that inventory using a network of bots, or who just sells it on to someone else who does that).
All of these are examples of leakage, which is the percentage of campaign expenditure that is spent on digital ads that are never served, never seen, served to bots or are knowingly useless. In some markets leakage represents an astonishing 40% of the total expenditure on online advertising. Leakage is not just providing a lucrative income for fraudsters and criminal gangs but respected, professional companies are benefiting as well sometimes unknowingly, but mostly with tacit approval.
This report defines the six main types of leakage and estimates their value in the world's top 10 ad markets.
Pages: 50 (approx)
The internet as a new distribution channel for movies
Around 1992, when the web was just getting going, most people accessed the Internet using 14.4kbit/s dial-up modems. At this time the idea of streaming movies in high definition (HD) over the Internet to a PC seemed like science fiction. And anyone suggesting that in 20 years time it would be possible to stream HD movies to mobile phones would have been laughed out of the room.
But then Nortel introduced the '1-Meg Modem' which was the world's first technology that telecoms operators could use to offer super-fast internet access. By today's standards 1Mbit/s seems slow but in 1994 it was a revelation. Today, an increasing number of governments regard broadband internet access as a human right – like the right to fresh water or electricity – and they are putting in place policy programmes aimed at allowing any home to get a minimum speed of 20Mbit/s.
The mass deployment of broadband internet is having a major impact on how movie content is commercialized for home or personal use. These changes will become pervasive and permanent. Looking ahead, the technical formats that will define filmed entertainment for the next 20 to 40 years – such as UHD, autostereoscopic 3D and new forms of cinematography based on virtual reality and light field image capture will all be better executed when freed of the constraints imposed by physical formats and traditional linear channels.
This report looks at online movie distribution in detail by analysing the underlying economics, value chain, key players and how the online movie market is unfolding around the world. The report also contains projections for the total revenues that movie studios will earn in the future as internet-based distribution becomes pervasive.
Updated: Jan 2014
A handful of successful models are emerging from the mist. Here they are.
It could be argued that the world needs quality journalism more now than at any time in the past. Whether the topic is the economy, terrorism, climate change, privacy, pensions, healthcare or technology there seem to be more serious issues to write about today than has even been the case in the past.
One challenge is how to replace the news industry's printed newspaper model will an all-digital model – which is profitable. Another problem is how to cater for the needs of a growing segment of the news readership who seem to be interested in a very different type of content than traditional news organisations are used to producing. The fact that news content can be copied or re-purposed by rivals in a matter of minutes has opened to door to 1,000s of 'parasitic', ad-funded news sites who are not in the business of journalism at all. The final complicating factor is that traditional news providers are now having to complete with a range of digital-only rivals who are not encumbered by having to carry the burden of a high-cost, frequently loss-making print operation.
Here we look at the online news market by carefully analysing all the major players.
This report breaks the online news market down into six constituent market segments and defines the market forces that are shaping each one. You will find an analysis which values the whole online news business in terms of total revenue which is then divided into advertising and subscription revenue, for each of the six segments.
The report also explains the core business strategy and key success factors for each of the six segments of the online news market.
Digital technology, connected devices and data analytics allow merchants to sell their wares in ways that are impossible offline
The more time consumers are spending online, the more likely they are to buy online – provided that the online retail environment is close enough to an offline retail experience, while offering tangible benefits.
This explains why online retailing continues to grow strongly. From a starting point of zero in 1993 the total value of online retail sales in 2020 will be USD 2.7 trillion.
But unlike other parts of the digital economy where the old will eventually be completely replaced by the new, online retail will not completely replace offline retail. For example, it will be a very long time before it is possible to re-create a luxury shopping experience without physical presence. And high-priced purchases that involve complex contracts will remain similarly out of reach, although for other reasons.
Nevertheless, right now the story is one of steady growth for the foreseeable future.
This reports surveys the highly diverse online retail sector and offers market forecasts, market analysis and profiles of a diverse range of online-only retailers. Thanks to the wide range of disruptive online retail concepts and models described the report represents a 'cook book' that describes the state of the art in online retailing as well as clear indications about what the future holds.
Updated: Sep 2015
A detailed survey & analysis of the worldwide regulatory environment
When viewed globally, the regulation of over-the-top (OTT) TV services is still mostly a political matter with most jurisdictions only now beginning to consider how OTTs should be regulated, or whether they should be regulated at all.
While there are some signs of regulatory intervention – for example in Indonesia and some states in the US where Netflix is being targeted specifically – the overall picture is presently one where OTT TV is generally unregulated.
But the results of this study – commissioned by the Canada Media Fund – strongly indicate that this will not remain the case indefinitely. We approached 50 regulators in 20 countries order to define any present regulatory obligations – of which there are already plenty – and also where the regulatory thinking is headed.
One key finding is that regulators are analysing OTT on a category-wide basis, which means that other OTT services, like messaging and VoIP, are involved as well.
Our conclusion is that it is inconceivable that the OTT TV market can reach its mature state – which is where it becomes the primary means of distributing TV programming – while somehow managing to escape the sort of regulations that currently apply to broadcast TV.
The findings are essential reading for anyone involved in OTT internet TV, whether on the content side or the service delivery side.
Updated: 1 Mar 2016
A compelling case for why the future of television distribution will increasingly involve the Internet
The television industry is experiencing a generational upheaval as legacy recorded formats - like DVD and Blu-ray, and distribution infrastructures - like satellite and terrestrial broadcast, are increasingly being replaced by virtual formats and Internet-based distribution.
Freed from the limitations of physical media, linear programming formats and broadcast distribution, television – as an entertainment category – is about to experience its best years yet.
The mass deployment of digital devices has dramatically expanded the consumption envelope which has led to the total number of hours of content being produced per year rising to an all time high. Meanwhile, online publishers are turning to video to attract and retain users, further fueling the demand for new content.
It is no wonder that the total number of hours spent viewing television content is higher than ever before.
In the future, the only role for legacy TV business models will be in developing markets which have poorly developed internet infrastructure and in niche market segments - like home theater, or where the target demographic is aged and not interested in changing ingrained behavior patterns.
This report presents a detailed analysis and projections for the internet television market worldwide.
Apart from details on all the major players and market projections for the four main OTT revenues streams you will find a rich narrative that explains what the market looks like today and what it will become in the future.
As the world's first truly great music streaming service, Pandora has had the time and capital to become a global leader. But that chance has now gone.
Founded in 2000, Pandora Media is so well established that it almost seems part of the very fabric of the Internet. Indeed, many would find it hard to imagine the Internet without Pandora - especially the company's army of loyal users.
But let's be honest – Pandora's strategic positioning is very delicate: the company operates in a loss-making industry where nobody makes any money, offers a basic non-interactive service that has hardly changed since at least 2007 and is fixated on the US, whilst rivals are in a race to achieve scale by pursuing international strategies. And that's before we get to the question of what rate - three judges will decide - Pandora should pay the music industry for streaming its music. Pandora is by no means unfixable but the company needs more than a sticking plaster.
This report takes a detailed look at where Pandora is today, after 15 years, by looking at the market within which the company operates - music streaming services, a selection of key competitors and the key success factors in the music streaming business. The report also presents an analysis of what Pandora needs to do to turn losses into profits along with forecasts for Pandora's revenues and subscriber numbers to 2020.
Pages: 50 (approx)
Are companies like Google and Facebook extracting more value from users than they are delivering back?
Whether it is serving targeted advertisements, providing content recommendations or delivering route directions while driving, today's digital economy relies on users providing their personal data to sometimes unfamiliar companies – for free.
The intrinsic value of this data is demonstrated by the fact that many service providers could not operate without it but are companies like Google and Facebook onto too much of a good thing? Is it conceivable that such companies may one day have to pay users to monetise their personal data, rather than simply getting it for free?
This report uses a novel methodology to place a value on the personal data of the average online user and then compares that value with the market value of the services the user gets in return – with some surprising results.
Pages: 50 (approx)
Implications for users and impacts on the Internet
It is commonly appreciated that the computational power and storage capacity of a modern smartphone is greater than a state-of-the-art supercomputer in the 1960s. It is also well understood that the performance of smartphones will continue to improve for at least the next two decades.
This technological trend does not just have implications for the number of movies we will be able to store on our personal devices, but could challenge the very structure of the internet. This report looks at how the emergence of extremely powerful personal devices will impact on the cloud and network-based delivery model that is pervasive today - which is based on an assumption that network-end computation is more feasible and lower cost than device-end computation.
The conclusions of this report are dramatic and have relevance for all digital services and internet access providers.
Pages: 50 (approx)
An analysis of what robots can do today, and what will be possible in the future
This report analyses the worldwide robotics industry by reviewing its 12 constituent application segments. Each segment is presented as a cameo report which includes practical use cases, key vendors and the economic value as defined by vendor revenues and the long-term potential.
You will also obtain an overall analysis which compares and contrasts the market value and transformational potential of each of the 12 segments of the robotics industry. The report offers a practical, realistic assessment of the long-term potential of robotics technology.
Pages: 50 (approx)
Services like Uber and Airbnb might represent the beginning of the end, or merely the end of the beginning
Some parts of the much-lauded 'sharing economy' have turned out to be imaginary - services that allowed users to rent unused power tools to others in their neighbourhood went nowhere interesting.
Meanwhile, other services – like Uber and Airbnb have been stellar successes. A critical question is whether there are any more Ubers lurking in the shadows waiting patiently for the perfect moment to leap onto the market?
This report looks at 20 different sharing models - some of which have failed, some of which have succeeded and others which are still in progress - in order to develop an assessment model that can be used to evaluate the viability and future potential of new sharing models and the outlook for the whole category.
Pages: 50 (approx)
Repurposing Google Glass for industrial usage is the right decision, while the far larger consumer market is reconsidered
The visual processing performance of the human brain is extremely sophisticated – evidenced perhaps by the fact that over 30% of the brain's total processing power is involved with visual processing and also the difficulty that artificial intelligence scientists and engineers are having trying to develop machines that can perform even quite simple image recognition tasks.
The basic idea behind smart glasses is to insert suitable imagery into the wearer's field of view so that the brain's extraordinarily powerful visual processing capabilities can be exercised in ways that are impossible with natural imagery. These 'unnatural' images can lead to over-stimulation, leading to fatigue, dizziness and headaches. But if the images are executed carefully they promise to positively transform how we process information.
Contained in this report is an analysis of the industrial uses of smart glasses which is where most smart glasses deployments are currently taking place. The numerous use cases included in this report do not just allow the reader to understand the industrial situations where smart glasses are applicable, but also what sort of use cases would work in the consumer market.
The report then presents an analysis of adoption of smart glasses by consumers by first looking at where Google Glass went wrong and then presenting a roadmap which can fix the problems.
Pages: 50 (approx)
With fragmentation rife, and the leading vendors determined to go it alone progress will be slow
It would be great to be able use your smartphone to turn the oven on when you're out of the house – because you forgot to do that when you left an hour ago. Or how about speaking into your smartwatch to check you turned the heating off while you're on the way to the airport.
These are basic use cases for the smart home, but they are not easy today partly because the sprawling structure of the smart homes market has led to the various interest groups coalescing into silos which are working to ?steer the fledgling market in their direction. But another reason why simple use cases have been so hard to execute is that the first purpose-designed operating systems for the smart home only arrived on in 2015, and market participants are still trying to understand how to react.
Up to now, it has seemed that mostly everyone has wanted to own the smart homes market, but in the clamour for control the casualty has been the user experience and a market which is growing more slowly than could have been the case.
The smart homes sector might evolve rather like the gaming industry or mobile industry, where a small number of 'vertical silos' have formed but which are basically incompatible. This would mean that appliance and home electricals vendors would either need to decide which platform to support, or to add ‘multi-mode’ functionality to their products.
This reports looks at the smart home market as it stands today and presents a rich narrative for how it will evolve in the future. The various industry and vendor standards initiatives are reviewed and forecasts are presented for how the market will grow into 2022.
Importantly, the report also contains extensive use cases and practical illustrations of how the smart home will operate in the future.
Updated: Jan 2016
Hopes are high for the newest personal screen, but a heavy overlap with smartphones and vague use cases means the risks are high, too
Smartwatches first appeared on the market as early as 1982 in the form of watches that incorporated miniature calculator keypads, but these early products were not very smart: it has only recently become possible for vendors like Apple, Samsung and others to produce electronic watches that incorporate high performance computing functionality and which can claim to be truly smart.
For the next 20 years we can expect semiconductor technology to continue advancing by delivering more storage and more processing performance while requiring less electrical power – all at a lower cost. Hence, we can expect today's generation of smart watches to get smarter and smarter until their performance far outstrips the highest performance smartphones like the iPhone 6.
This report analyses the worldwide smartwatch market by profiling a wide range of smartwatch vendors and analyzing the category's four constituent segments. The report also presents an analysis of how the smart watch segment will impact on the mainstream watch market, and especially on the Swiss Watch market.
Updated: Mar 2015
Far removed from selling merchandise on Facebook pages, social commerce could transform online retail as we know it
Social commerce is a form of online selling where consumer-to-consumer interactions mainly enable the sale, rather than consumer-to-retailer or consumer-to-merchant interactions. It is too simplistic to regard social commerce as a fusion of online commerce and social networking or even as an enhanced form of social networking. This report finds that successful social commerce ventures fuse four key social networking concepts with four new concepts which have the effect of radically altering the concept of buying online.
When we think about social commerce we are not thinking about a merchant who has a Facebook page and who sells products and services directly from that page, even though this might be the popular conception of what social commerce involves. This situation is simply another form of online retail.
This report begins with presenting a clear analysis of what social commerce is as practised today by a wide range of companies. Based on a solid foundation of facts and data, the report then ventures into future by offering a compelling vision for what social commerce could look like in the future if implemented by a major social networking site, like Facebook.
Updated: Nov 2012
Innovation has slowed and new social start-ups are few, but social is bigger than ever and just as important
It turns out that making money out of user-generated content is hard, and practically impossible for social networks that fail to achieve massive scale.
With the lowest ad rates in the industry, fickle users, changing fashions and super-low entry barriers, the only real defence in the social media market is to achieve massive scale, which ultimately means that users have nowhere else to go.
This report analyses all the major social networking services and also the social networking scene in a selection of major international markets. You will also find comprehensive market analysis, including powerful insights into the direction of Facebook – by far the world's most popular social network – and market forecasts for internet users, social networking users and social networking revenues.
Updated: Jan 2015
But it is with some irony that Spotify's most important partner is also the company's greatest liability
As the world's largest music subscription service, Spotify has clearly found the success formula that has eluded most rivals. The company is not yet profitable, and may never achieve that goal but with the music subscription market in full swing, Spotify is steadfastly executing the one and only strategy that could turn losses into profits, which is to achieve the largest scale possible.
In this report you will find a detailed review of Spotify's international business along with equally detailed analysis of how Spotify compares with its two largest competitors which are Apple and Pandora. The report also contains a forecast for how Spotify's revenues and active user base will grow through 2020.
Pages: 50 (approx)
Desktop PCs and notebooks will endure in the business and prosumer markets, but consumer needs have moved on. Permanently.
It's been 15 years since Bill Gates demonstrated the first serious attempt at a tablet PC. But Microsoft's visionary product was years ahead of its time and failed to resonate with users. Success came 10 years later, in 2010, when Apple announced the iPad and from that moment it was clear that the PC industry would have to change direction.
Personal computing devices – including smartphones, tablets and, in the future, smart watches – will become the primary means of accessing the web with desktop PCs and notebook computers accounting for a steadily falling share of total screen time.
This report charts the rise of the modern tablet, explains how the market is segmented, what the various vendors' offerings are and presents a series of forecasts for tablet shipments and the installed base worldwide with breakouts for 24 individual countries.
Updated: Aug 2014
New products, falling prices and fully engaged corporate players means VR is poised to start generating revenue
A very small number of companies wield an inordinate amount of control over the digital economy: Google, Apple, Facebook, Microsoft and Samsung.
It is highly significant that all of these companies are actively pursuing virtual reality (VR), either by developing near-term products – such as Facebook/Oculus, or pursuing advanced R&D projects – such as Apple. In addition, a range of other branded players and start-ups are investing in VR projects.
All of this activity is not just because of envisaged usage by the gaming industry, although this is the most obvious early adopter of VR technology.
This report presents a business analysis of the VR segment, firstly by looking at the key technologies vendors and products and then by analysing the key application areas for VR technology and sizing each of those segments in terms of total spending by business users and consumers.
Pages: 50 (approx)
Presently dominated by smartwatches, wearable tech is about where mobile tech was in 1980
It is hard to envisage a time when today's top-end smartphones will be replaced with something else. But that process of creative destruction is already under way. Sure, some things will remain the same - for instance, the underlying functions of modern smartphones will endure, as will the need for a central 'control unit' that we will carry with us just as we do today. In addition, the continuing miniaturisation of key components is providing engineers and entrepreneurs with options to better implement existing functions while enabling functions that have hitherto been unfeasible or even seemed like science fiction.
The wearables sector is still at a very early stage with the most tangible signs of activity being smartwatches like those offered by Apple and Samsung, fitness trackers such as those offered by Fitbit, advanced sports performance monitors such as those offered by Garmin and Polar and a range of products focused on industrial applications.
To define an embryonic market like wearables solely in terms of the products we can see today would be to misunderstand the market's long term potential. Instead, it is important to focus on where the enabling technologies are headed and the use cases that will be enabled in the future – which is what this report does.
Encompassing data and information on 221 companies,. this report contains a detailed analysis of the entire wearable technology market, including all of its constituent market segments, use cases, products and enabling technologies.
Updated: Feb 2015
Today's smartwatches give barely a clue as to where the wearables segment is headed
Rather than our connection to the Internet being channelled through a single touchpoint, such as a smartphone, we foresee a time in the future when many of the functions currently performed inside a smartphone (plus others that are not yet performed at all) will be performed by a number of micro-miniature devices that will reside outside the body, on or under the skin, or even inside the body.
This report presents a visionary analysis of what the wearables space might look like in the coming decades by considering seven different categories of enabling wearable technology. The report begins with a comprehensive review of the leading edge in sensors and enabling wearable technologies.
Next the report takes a bold step into the future and projects where each of these technologies could end up in the coming two decades. Finally, everything comes together with the proposal of a new wireless standard – dubbed 'Wi-Bo' – which would allow a range of body sensors and devices to be networked together using an ultra low-power wireless aura which would surround the body.
Updated: May 2015