Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Over 25,000 people earn an income from doing TaksRabbit tasks

"TaskRabbit is revolutionizing how work gets done. And we’ve already come a long way this year – since January, our task posting volume has grown by 50 percent. Last year, we acquired 1.25 million new users and are on track to double that in 2014. We now have over 25,000 people earning an income on our site, with 10 percent running tasks as a full-time job."

Desktop accounts for 70% of paid search spend

"Desk­tops now rep­re­sent 70% of paid search (com­pared to 77% in August 2013) while mobile/smartphones account for 30%. Cur­rent trends indi­cate that the share for desk­tops will con­tinue to decline and hit 60% of paid search by the end of 2014 due to the organic increase of smart­phone adop­tion. The uptick in smart­phone adop­tion and usage can be attrib­uted to bet­ter WiFi avail­abil­ity, greater mobile data band­width, and improved mobile land­ing pages, site and app expe­ri­ences con­ducive to bet­ter facil­i­tate mobile shop­ping. For the UK, mobile adop­tion has out­paced the U.S. (64%) with desk­tops only account­ing for 56% of all paid search spend. Tablets account for a quar­ter of all search spend and mobile rose to almost 20% (from just 11% ten months earlier)."
Source:  Data from Adobe, reported on it's blog, 16th July 2014
"Based on adver­tiser data across key ver­ti­cals in the U.S., U.K. and Ger­many, we looked at the var­i­ous ad for­mats from Google includ­ing Prod­uct List­ing Ads (PLAs) – which are becom­ing part of Google Shop­ping – to see how they’re per­form­ing for adver­tis­ers. The analy­sis is based on the most com­pre­hen­sive set of indus­try data includ­ing $2+ bil­lion of annual man­aged search spend of 500+ Adobe Media Opti­mizer cus­tomers and 200+ bil­lion search impressions."
Note - lots more data in the blog post

China has 632m internet users, including 527m mobile internet users

"The number of people who surf the Internet via mobile devices in China has for the first time exceeded the number using computers to go online, an industry report said on Monday.
The number increased by 14.42 million over the past six months, so that now 83.4 percent of China’s Internet surfers are using mobile phones to go online, according to the report issued by the China Internet Network Information Center, a government-backed industry administrative body.
The total number of Chinese netizens was 632 million by the end of June, 527 million of whom logged onto the World Wide Web through their smartphones, the report said.
It is the first time that the number of mobile Internet users has surpassed that of those surfing the Web in traditional ways, such as with personal computers and laptops, said Liu Bing, deputy director with the CINIC.
"In other words, the mobile phone can be regarded as the key terminal device for Chinese to get online,” he said.
As the mobile network has taken the lead in the country’s Internet development, its status has also become firmer among netizens, he said.
The increasing number of smartphone owners has driven a rapid rise in e-commerce, instant messaging and entertainment applications, “which reflects a diverse demand of netizens”, he said.
According to the report, the number of users who use mobile phones to make payments has increased 63.4 percent from January to June, with the growth of payment apps likewise surging in that period.
People aged 20 to 40 are the main mobile Internet users, Yin said, adding that they are more likely to try new applications.
She said she does not think that mobile devices will replace computers. “Instead, different Internet users will find their own channels to get online and apps will be promoted in accordance with their various demands,” she said."

Vulfpeck's silent album Sleepify eearned $20,000 in royalties from Spotify

"Los Angeles groove band Vulfpeck’s silent album ‘Sleepify’ may have been a mere prank intended to rack up play counts and royalties, or perhaps it was a more sophisticated act of digital performance art. It's definitely been a rocky road -- but either way, the inaudible ten-track recording has delivered the band a very real payout from Spotify of nearly $20,000, and the band is proceeding with plans to book a U.S. tour.
During its seven-week life on Spotify during March and April, ‘Sleepify’ garnered about 5.5 million plays, according to a royalty statement shared by keyboardist Jack Stratton. At payouts that varied from $0.0030 to $0.0038 per play for the short tracks, the band’s final two-month take from Spotify was $19,655.56 -- not bad for a record consisting of about five minutes’ quiet time. (That figure doesn’t count the payouts for Los Angeles-based Vulfpeck’s more tuneful records, which received smaller play counts and royalties. One cut from the band’s 2013 album ‘My First Car’ has surpassed 120,000 total plays, and several others have more than 40,000.) Moreover, Stratton said the band is anticipating another $0.0002 per stream for copyright payouts -- about $1,100."

Monday, 21 July 2014

McKinsey & Company projected that there would be 900,000 mobile subscribers in the US by 2000

"In 1980, McKinsey & Company was commissioned by AT&T (whose Bell Labs had invented cellular telephony) to forecast cell phone penetration in the U.S. by 2000. The consultant’s prediction, 900,000 subscribers, was less than 1% of the actual figure, 109 Million. Based on this legendary mistake, AT&T decided there was not much future to these toys. A decade later, to rejoin the cellular market, AT&T had to acquire McCaw Cellular for $12.6 Billion. By 2011, the number of subscribers worldwide had surpassed 5 Billion and cellular communication had become an unprecedented technological revolution."
Source:  A blog post by Professor Angel Lozano, retrieved 21st July 2014
Note - lots of other great examples of faulty prediction in the same post

3 Tweets a day should mean 30% of followers are exposed to one of an account's tweets each week

"[...] We saw that brands that tweet two to three times per day can typically reach an audience size that’s equal to 30% of their follower base during a given week. This indicates that Tweet consistency is a key factor when it comes to maximizing your organic reach on Twitter.
When brands pair consistent tweeting with engaging content, there’s potential for even higher organic reach. In fact, Wheat Thins (@WheatThins) achieved organic reach equal to 95% of their follower base by tweeting 2x a day per week, while Trident (@TridentGum) saw organic reach that was 5x greater than their follower base by tweeting 3x per day."

The average US smartphone user spends over 30 hours a month using apps

Source:  Data from Nielsen, reported in a blog post, 1st July 2014
Note - Total time spent with apps per user - 30 hours, 15 minutes - is 50% higher than two years ago
Note - Apps includes games

More than 2 million 'Yos' are sent each day

"Since its launch in April, the Israel-founded startup has grown to more than 2 million downloads. Co-founder Moshe Hogeg says users are sending more than 2 million "Yos" per day. A new version of the app will be launched before the end of the month. Yo currently has three employees."
Source:  Business Insider, 18th July 2014

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Relative crime levels by district correlate with the relative number of Uber rides

"You’ll notice that we do the most San Francisco trips in the downtown and SoMa areas. These also happen to be large, densely populated regions, so that’s to be expected. So in our spatial demand predictions we clearly need to take into account population density.
But there’s a catch. While neighborhood population density might account for some of the variance in our demand, we also need to take into account where people are hanging out, going to work, etc. This is different from census data. Where people live, where people work, and where people play are (usually) in very different neighborhoods in a densely populated city.
So we needed a simple surrogate metric for where people are. We could do that by counting the number of businesses or bars or whatever in a neighborhood… but we had a better idea.
We hypothesized that crime would be a proxy for non-residential population density.
According to the data from San Francisco Crimespotting (HUGE shout-out to Stamen Design for the data; you guys are awesome!), there were 75,488 crimes in San Francisco since Uber’s launch on 2010 June 01. These crime data are broken down into 12 categories: murder, robbery, aggravated assault, simple assault, arson, theft, vehicle theft, burglary, vandalism, narcotics, alcohol, and prostitution.
If it looks kind of like the trips map to you, that’s because the two are decently correlated (r = 0.56, p < 0.001). (For you math sticklers, crime and trip data are log distributed by neighborhood, so all correlations are Spearman rank correlations, but log-log Pearson correlations give approximately the same results).
Neighborhoods with more crime (more people hanging out) have more Uber rides.
But we also wanted to know if any specific crimes might be better predictors of rides than others.
To examine this we looked at the correlation between the number of each type of crime and the number of trips we’ve done in each neighborhood. All types of crime except murder, vehicle theft, and arson were positively correlated with number of trips. After correcting for multiple comparisons, four crimes remained significantly correlated (p < 0.05, Bonferroni corrected):
In other words:
The parts of San Francisco that have the most prostitution, alcohol, theft, and burglary also have the most Uber rides! Party hard but be safe, Uberites!"
Note - the key point is that crime levels are a good proxy for non-residential population density