In 2012 social networks are aggressively positioning their sites as a link between consumers and merchants. Both fixed and mobile social networks tend to market themselves as a tool for merchants to connect with consumers and promote brands – rather than just as services for connecting friends.
Facebook remains the global social media leader and while it has managed to capture the largest share of the market in recent years, the industry is not sitting still and new social networks continue to emerge that aim to improve upon the originals models or introduce new concepts. Google+ and Pinterest are two good examples of these.
In addition, online gaming, particularly social gaming is becoming increasingly popular. Facebook is well positioned in this area too, offering popular games such as Zynga’s Farmville and Words with Friends. Cloud-gaming is also emerging with the launch of BT’s OnLive service.
Mobile social networking has become mainstream with hundreds of millions of users around the world accessing social networks over mobile devices. Gaming is a turbulent sector however, even for popular games developers, with Zynga laying-off of employees in late 2012 as a result of disappointing earnings. However the developer has new plans to turn this trend around in 2013.
The following report includes recent industry insights and information on the social media and online gaming sectors. The report includes selected information on the leading trends and statistics in this sector. The report is designed to provide current observations which may assist investors, analysts and industry participants in making investment and business decisions.
Facebook has new competitors as Instagram and Pinterest rises in popularity; MySpace re-establishes itself in 2012; Zynga stumbles but has plans for the future; Social media and gaming converge; Cloud-gaming a hot trend; Online gambling may converge with social networks.
Companies mentioned in this report:
Google; Facebook; Instagram; MySpace; Twitter; LinkedIn; Wikimedia; Zynga; YouTube; Pinterest.