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Digital Service Providers: B2C

Digital organizations must consider a platform strategy. Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, Tencent, and a handful of other consumer-oriented platforms are expanding positions in multiple markets including media and entertainment, news and information services, advertising, adtech/martech, telecom/broadband, transportation, retail, datacenters, workplaces, the Internet of Things (IoT), brick-and-mortar retail, and travel and hospitality.

IDC's Digital Service Providers: B2C analyzes the growing, potentially dominant role these platforms play in the distribution of content and services. The program is premised on the idea that these entities, with monthly active user bases in the multiple hundreds of millions, will increasingly aggregate both their own and third parties' services against their massive active user bases, transforming the way digital services of all types (and some physical services) will be created, aggregated, packaged, priced, distributed, and consumed. The program quantifies these impacts and provides essential guidance to market participants that understand the need for something beyond a social strategy.


Markets and Subjects Analyzed

  • Platforms as channels: The evolution and role of social networking and messaging platforms and their associated capabilities into broad service distribution channels
  • Platforms' impact on adjacent markets: Impact of platform-centric competitors' initiatives on affected sectors (e.g., publishing, content, transportation, and commerce)
  • Global mobile app economy: Downloading the revenue forecast plus key performance indicators for the Apple App Store and Google Play plus performance metrics, evolution, and competitive outlook for mobile app storefronts and distribution channels

Core Research

  • Platform Landmarks: A Series of Reports Covering Major Events and Announcements by Key Audience Aggregators (Such as Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Microsoft, Snap, and Twitter), Certain Leading Network Operators, and Others Worldwide
  • Service Influence Reach: Matrix or "Heat Mapping" Coverage of the Expanding Functional Reach of Platforms and Analysis of Their Effectiveness
  • Annual Worldwide and U.S. Mobile Apps Market Forecast and Analysis
  • Annual Mobile App Developer Sentiment Survey and Associated Analysis

In addition to the insight provided in this service, IDC may conduct research on specific topics or emerging market segments via research offerings that require additional IDC funding and client investment.


Key Questions Answered

  1. How will Facebook, Google, and others be affected by regulation, changes in demand, changes in advertising, and moves into new markets beyond social and search?
  2. What platforms benefit my business most and least as a route to market?
  3. What strategies and tactics win or lose among key consumer-facing platform providers (e.g., Apple, Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Amazon, SoftBank, Baidu, and mobile network operators), and how will the service economy be affected?
  4. How are the major app platforms evolving to address multiscreen strategies, wearable technologies, AR/VR hardware and content, and IoT?
  5. What meaningful new competitors or business models are expected to emerge in the near and medium terms, and what will their impact be on the existing market structure?
  6. How is the mobile app economy moving on a by-country and by-platform basis?

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Meet the Experts
John Jackson

Research Vice President, Mobile & Connected Platforms