This Week in Global Mobile | January 21, 2011

At times it's difficult to keep pace with the latest global mobile developments. I hope this selection of news stories from the past week will help you navigate the growing global network of connectivity:

  • The Red Cross reported that last year’s Haitian earthquake fundraiser took in over $32 million from mobile SMS contributions.
  • The Tunisian revolution is certainly being molded by Twitter and other social media, but Evgeny Morozov and NDN’s Sam DuPont reminded us to remain cautious of jumping to conclusions.
  • The F.C.C. and D.O.J. approved (with many conditions) a proposal to merge Comcast and NBC Universal to form the world’s largest television, movie, and Internet company.
  • Recognizing that the vast majority of mobile users in the developing world don’t have smart phones, Facebook announced a new app that functions on basic mobiles.
  • Mobile apps around the world will grow to a $25 billion industry in 2015, up from $6.8 billion in 2010, reported research firm World Mobile Applications Market.
  • Twitter C.E.O. Evan Williams introduced a Korean version of Twitter, part of a heavy international expansion strategy following a rapid increase in usership and tweets.
  • 93 percent more mobile ads were delivered world-wide in 2010 than the year before, while Kenya’s mobile traffic grew 245 percent, reported BuzzCity.
  • Starbucks launched a new mobile app allowing consumers to pay for their drinks using their mobile phones by scanning digital versions of their Starbucks Card at the register.
  • Etisalta, the Middle East and North Africa’s leading mobile operator, experienced a 200 percent increase in roaming traffic in 2010.
  • Ten percent of mobile users consume 90 percent of mobile data, with video predicting to consume 60 percent of all mobile data in 2011, reported The Telegraph.
  • With 457 million Internet users, China comprises 23% of the global online population, reported the China Internet Network Information Center.
  • Writing in the the Harvard Business Review, Google C.E.O. Eric Schmidt revealed that all of the search giant’s 2011 initiatives will focus on mobile innovation.