Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends Reports – My Take on Asia

D11 just finished and I’ve been reading some reports, but as always, I’m more interested in Asia rather the common markets that we always hear from.

Saw Rick Martin’s post on his analysis of the Internet Trends Reports here and he focused on the job market and how countries should react to this shift. Seeing the trends in labor forces declining is very interesting especially with larger markets. Now that the whole global industry has changed, we are seeing how markets respond and how companies are addressing the challenges of the new world. It’s also defining how companies are formed all the way to employment.

I’ll be referencing this slide as I make my own opinions and analysis based on my knowledge and some data to back it up.

Slide 4

I love seeing how internet growth is happening all over the world especially in developing nations. Coming from the Philippines, and knowing the effects of easier access to information, I’m pleased to see how well the internet is growing. Countries like Vietnam and Indonesia are growing rapidly as well. The past two years has been good for Indonesia with various internet companies setting up shop and investors seeing potential with the growth of the market.

That’s just the major coverages aside from the more local ones like Techinasia and e27.

The Philippines has been growing for the past year and it has been surprising markets all over the world. The Philippines still has a lot of challenges to overcome but seeing growth is always good. The infrastructure is still lacking compared to other countries in South East Asia, and with a monopoly between two major teleco companies is not helping at all. A huge intervention is needed to be able to solve this problem and I hope they realize this sooner than later.

Also, the establishment of two major incubators (backed up by the same telco) is helping tremendously with the growth of the technology scene and I’m really grateful to have met the people behind it. has a good summary of this

Vietnam is also on the rise for the past few years. Although internet censorship still exists I’ve been hearing great news about the infrastructure in Vietnam. If you are having a hard time researching about Vietnam and what’s going on there, TechinAsia has a good summary of news sources here

Slide 6

Not surprising considering the growth of these markets. Even Socialbakers analysis got it spot on with 4 out of the 15 top countries in facebook usage growth during 2012.

Slide 7

I’m still torn on this as I haven’t seen enough data on the mobile phone OS usage in South East Asia. I know modern smartphones are big in Singapore, Blackberrys are popular in Indonesia, but there’s not enough movement on this front for the usage to be similar to more developed nations. Everybody has two phones in the Philippines, but it doesn’t mean that majority has smart phones. I know that this will change as cheaper smartphones flood the market and we can easily see this happening now as more and more. Mobile development is happening around the region, but until we get more utility based apps that solve local problems we’ll have to be followers more than anything. Facebook and Google has been exploring this market such as Google Free where you can connect to the net for free if you want to search for something and Facebook launched zero as a light weight method to connect to Facebook on feature phones. I’m not really sure of the success of these programs, as they are merely bridges for a more full fledged smart phone experience.

Slide 40

The growth and potential is there but again, the penetration is not enough for smartphones to be ubiquitous. It’ll only take time. There’s a bunch of mobile companies now and if you are entering the world of software development, being a mobile developer now in Asia (well a developer anywhere) will be a good career move.

Slide 45,46,47

Netbooks had a good thing coming during the day, with it’s cheap price point and basic enough features, killed by the tablet, and smartphones, this will be the entry point of developing markets to the internet. Being cheap and having enough capabilities we can easily see the demand for these devices surging on. Considering that even a cat can use the iPad, cheaper iOS devices will be welcomed by developing nations with arms wide open.

Newer technologies are introduced in the following slides such as wearable devices and drivables but I don’t see these devices arriving anytime soon in SEA. Still a lot of challenges with infrastructure being the base of everything. I can’t wait to see more from these countries as more and more grassroots movements happen. If you are thinking of exploring new markets (well, relatively new) South East Asia is brimming with money, growth, and potential.

As always, I would love to hear from you, let’s have a discussion. 🙂