Firstly, who is Mary Meeker and what does she know about the internet?

Mary Meeker’s annual Internet Trends report has become a landmark document that’s handeed around each year, analysed etc to understand at a high-level what the hell is going on with the internet. A very big, complicated question.

As for Meeker, she’s been voted one of the most power women in the World by Forbes, and is a partner at VC firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers in the US.

Below is a link to skim through the whole report (it’s worth a look), but for those stumped for time here’s a our top 10 take outs:

1) This is just a cool fact. In 1995, the top 15 internet companies by market capitalisation were worth $17 Billion; in 2015 that’s now $2.4 trillion. Apple was number 2 in 1995 and is now number 1. Apple is double the size of it’s nearest competitor.

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2) The internet is just beginning. There’s a great chart showing the impact that the internet has had on different areas of the economy – Meeker shows consumer, and business is at maturity; but where the fun is really beginning is in security, education, healthcare, and government.

This is important, where ever you’re working the disruptive impact of the internet hasn’t stopped.
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3) Global smartphone and internet growth is getting very mature (ex. developing markets which are still growing particularly India).

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Think back 6 years and I remember working on a piece of strategy (for a Telco) where the question was ‘should we cater for smartphones?’ So dumb in hindsight. Basically you’re laggard customer is on the net and with a smartphone…so god forbid if you have less knowledge than them.

4) But total internet traffic is growing (+21% yoy) – this is being driven by more immersive content – (video) and access (mobile). (slide 13) and so is the time we spend with the internet +11% yoy.

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We all have the hardware to access the internet…but we’re spending more of our time on the net. Hello, meals where half the room is still looking at their phone (not at the person in front of them).

5) Welcome to the age of the ‘buy’ button.

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Twitter, Facebook and Google have all been playing around with these – great for the customers (frictionless purchase)…maybe not so great for retailers (customer doesn’t have to visit the site to buy).

6) User generated content is the primary source of news on Twitter. Users are breaking stories before news sources – not surprising but it means news and information we trust is increasingly from our peers.

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7) 12-24 are setting the pace – and it’s all about visuals. Instagram is their ‘most important social network’

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…so it’s not surprise their camera is one of the most important functions on their phone

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8) Age of real-time services. Mobile has become the perfect platform to enable realtime services; they have sprung up everywhere…

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9) This year Gen Y will over take Baby Boomer as the largest group in the workforce. The implications of this are fascinating…Baby Boomers have been dominant since 2000 (and before that) with Gen X never quite big enough to over take them.

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The importance – Gen Y are near digital natives and this should fundamentally change the way we work. They also have different values to Baby Boomers and Gen Y – number 1 being ‘training and development’ and number 2 ‘job flexibility’.

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10) Finally, the rise of service e-commerce. Basically produce commerce (ebay, Amazon, alibi) continue to be huge; but we’re entering an age when service commerce is rising rapidly.

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Here’s the cool thing, service commerce is a way for people to supplement their income. They’re not just consumers they’re also the producer.

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This gets really interested when ‘regulators’ come into the equation…because when the regulate the ‘producer’ they’re also regulating the ‘consumer’.

What it was like...

What it was like…


What it's like now...

What it’s like now…

Best summed up by Co-founder and CEO of AirBnB Brian Chesky:
‘There are laws for people and there are laws for business. What happens when a person becomes a business? Suddenly these laws fell a little big outdated. They’re really 20th Century laws, and we’re in a 21st century economy’.

From our perspective there are quite a few of these businesses disrupting the retail environment…and you can’t wait for regulation to deal with it because – for the point that Chesky makes – the people are the business….or your consumer now has their own business.

Full report below:

Author Pippa Kulmar

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