Global mobile ad revenue was $9.7bn in 2012, according to Gartner. This will increase by 17.5 per cent between 2012 and 2013, to reach $11.4bn by the end of this year. Mobile search will drive mobile ad spend during much of the next few years, Gartner says, but by 2015, mobile web display - despite limited success seen today with banner ads - is expected to overtake both search and in-app display.
Gartner predicts the demise of the advertising market for driving app downloads, 'paid discovery', which it says is creating an inflated picture of revenue, a ‘bubble’, as seen in the early days of online ads. "Some correction in the growth rate must occur before demand from brand and local advertisers catches up with supply, and more sustainable economics support a faster growth rate commensurate with consumer adoption," said Stephanie Baghdassarian, research director at Gartner.
The Asia Pacific region continues to lead the world, with $4.3bn, 44 per cent of revenue, made here in 2012. China and India will increasingly contribute to this. North America saw the largest gain in 2012, of 22 per cent, to reach $3.1bn. All regions are growing and more large gains are still to be made. Another 81 per cent increase - or $11bn - is forecast between 2014 and 2016. This is almost equivalent to the total revenue expected globally for 2013.
By 2016, the APAC region will make up 38 per cent of revenues, $9.4bn, with North America taking 35 per cent, $8.8bn. Latin America, Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa combined are also expected to break the $1bn mark in that year, driven by growth markets, including Russia, Brazil and Mexico.