Social Media, HTML 5 Growth Are Trends to Watch at Mobile World Congress: Report

A Bluestreak report outlines five technology trends to watch at this year's Mobile World Congress convention in Barcelona.

As the popular Mobile World Congress 2011 conference quickly approaches, it is easy to get caught up in the buzz and lose sight of the facts and figures, which tell the real story about where technology is headed in 2011. According to a research report from Bluestreak Technology, a provider of multimedia presentation solutions, HTML 5 adoption will play a key role in mobile technology this year, as will the rise of Google's open source Android operating system, mobile TV, Facebook and social media, and video streaming.

The report noted 35 hours of video are added to YouTube every minute, and suggested that for emerging companies it means that in 2011 video should be an integral part of their technology and marketing strategy over the next year.

For television companies, the growth in video streaming means that it is important to architect new ways to incorporate more personalized media center options into the television viewing experience, the report noted. Facebook now ranks as the most visited site on the Internet with 75 percent of Americans, and 66 percent of the global Internet population visiting the site almost daily, according to a Nielsen report. The report goes on to state that Facebook is currently growing at three times the rate of the overall Internet with people spending an average of seven hours a month on the service. That is more than six times the amount of time they are spending on Google each month, Nielsen noted.

Bluestreak said they key takeaway from this development is that every technology company needs to take a moment to determine if their business strategies can benefit from the networking capabilities Facebook offers them in 2011.

"If you aren't incorporating social media, and in particular, Facebook, into your technology strategy in 2011 then you are missing a chance at interacting with the single largest online community ever assembled," the report said.

According to a report published by analyst firm Canalys cited in Bluestreak's research, the year-over-year growth rate for the Android OS from the fourth quarter of 2009 to the fourth quarter of 2010 was 615 percent.

"While much of the media buzz this year continues to surround Apple's iPhone, the iPhone has had flat growth for the past four quarters in a row while Google's open OS, Android, is now the leading smartphone OS in the market," the Bluestreak report noted. "While it still may be the most popular device for downloading applications, the sheer number of devices launching with the Android OS and the number of developers working with it make it an equally important priority for mobile strategies in 2011."

The number of subscribers the TV industry lost in the second and third quarters of 2010 stood at 335,000, according to an SNL Kagan report also cited in Bluestreak's research. This shift represents a "huge opportunity" for emerging companies to work with cable operators to augment the TV viewing experience, Bluestreak researchers said.

"Think integrating Web content into cable programming and adding new interactive options to menus and entertainment programming guides," the report recommended. "If not, online TV is going to continue to inflict serious cuts on the cable business in 2011."

HTML 5 is being adopted rapidly as an online video technology and companies need to prepare their growth strategies to incorporate this new standard, the report noted. According to a report by Web video cataloging service MeFeedia, cited in the Bluestreak presentation, the percentage of online video that is available in HTML 5 as of October 2010 stood at 54 percent, up from just 10 percent in January 2010.

"Video content providers offer HTML 5, Flash and other standards for video streaming to devices," Bluestreak's report said. "We do not see HTML 5 as a replacement technology but rather as another means to play video and develop rich user experiences."