Cloud computing delivers software applications from a centrally hosted facility to end users through a browser as a service. Mobile Cloud Applications & Services: Monetising Enterprise & Consumer Markets 2009-2014 indicates that the total market for cloud-based mobile applications will rise from a little more than $400 million in 2009 to nearly $9.5 billion by 2014, at an average annual increase of 88%.
Approximately 75% of this market is represented by enterprise users, and Juniper expects revenues in both user segments to be primarily derived from time-based subscriptions. In addition, advertising revenue potential exists in the consumer segment. In the field of cloud-based enterprise applications, mobile subscriptions are sometimes offered as part of a wider corporate package including desktop and laptop services.
Key Drivers of Mobile Cloud Computing
Key drivers of mobile cloud computing growth include the following elements:
- Launch of HTML5: The new HTML5 revision to the core markup language of the Worldwide Web, which is partially available to the public, offers improved data caching and reduces load demands, which will make cloud-based mobile connectivity a means of improving access in locales with poor coverage.
- Superior processing power: As individual smartphone apps become larger and more plentiful, the superior processing power of the cloud will allow apps to be downloaded as thin clients, with most processing performed on the cloud rather than the headset.
- Cloud-enabled enterprise mobility: The cloud enables collaborative apps to be available 24/7, at any location.
Mobile Device Popularity Surges
The market for cloud-based mobile applications is expected to boom as the general popularity of smartphones, 3G devices and other advanced mobile applications is surging in the US, according to comScore mobiLens data.
Between December 2008 and December 2009, the percentage of US mobile phone subscribers with unlimited data plans increased from 16% to 21%, with several phones now requiring an unlimited data plan subscription at the time of purchase. During the same period, smartphone ownership increased from 11% to 17%, while 3G phone ownership increased from 32% to 43%.