Mobile growth is huge, and could surge 3x in the next 2 years

Mobile has been one of the biggest drivers of growth in the tech sector since the iPhone’s launch. But if Digi-Capital‘s predictions hold water, you ain’t seen nothing yet. According to the research firm’s latest Mobile Internet Investment Review, investors plowed more than $32 billion into mobile tech companies in 2014.
The most valuable of those companies, the 68 mobile “unicorns” with a valuation of $1 billion or more, added $28 billion to their combined value in just the fourth quarter to reach a total of $261 billion.
“To put the $28B value added last quarter in perspective, that’s $300M [per day], or more than 30 Tim Cooks (who got paid over $9M last year) a day,” said Tim Merel, the managing director of Digi-Capital.
“But it wasn’t all plain sailing, as fourteen of the billion-dollar companies lost value (in some cases multiple billions of dollars). Admission also doesn’t guarantee lifetime membership, with two former unicorns falling below $1B in Q4 for a total of five dropouts last year.” You might think that these unicorns are the cream of the crop, and you’d be right. But even within this exclusive club, there’s a tier of truly successful elite companies.
Just 20 of those 68 billion-dollar mobile companies account for almost 70 percent of the entire group’s value, or $178 billion of the $261 billion total. Those top 5? Uber, WhatsApp, Twitter, Flipkart, and Snapchat.
Digi-Capital predicts that revenue from the mobile Internet will top $700 billion annually by 2017, more than tripling its 2014 figure. The vast majority of that, $500 billion, will come from m-commerce, or purchases made by people using their phones to order things online.
The U.S. and Europe will account for a fair amount of m-commerce growth. But where the market will really boom is in Asia, which will account for almost half of the m-commerce total by 2017, Digi-Capital predicts.