As the Mobile East Africa conference has ended today in Nairobi, Kenya… I have learnt a number of things by just following this hashtag #MEA2014.

The most interesting presentation from the conference was Tomi T Ahonen who said that ‘Mobile data is the black gold of 21st century’. Tomi is an Author, a mobile and digital trends specialist and Consultant, and Motivational Speaker on mobile who used to work as a Nokia executive and lectures at Oxford University.

He said that the mobile industry will be worth 6 trillion dollars this year and developers, companies need to take this opportunity and use it. The twitpic below was taken off his presentation and shows these 15 industries that need to get involved in this.

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Read more about his presentation in a story I wrote for Ugo Uganda.

With the above I was motivated to search how one can make money in the mobile economy and I found Anuj Khanna Director, a Wireless Expertise Consult on LinkedIn how shared the below 5 five revenue opportunities in mobile.

The example are not African related but can be used as learning grounds for those markets…

1. Mobile Retailing: In 2013 eBay recorded a total mobile commerce volume growth of 88%, with eBay reaching $22 billion and PayPal hitting $27 billion. 55% of all used car searches in the UK are initiated by mobile devices and close to 25% of car sales on Ebay are estimated to be concluded on a mobile phone.

2. Mobile Advertising: Close to $14 Billion was spent on mobile advertising services in 2013 and the figure is set to grow to $18 billion in 2014. Mobile ad revenues constituted 53% of overall ad sales for Facebook for the last quarter of 2013, up from just 23% a year ago and 49% in the third quarter.

3. Mobile Payments: Alipay from China had more than 300 million mobile payment registered users in 2013 and conducted 2.78 billion unique transactions for the year. They are currently processing close to 18 million transactions per day. The mobile payments landscape is much wider than an individual paypal or alipay wallet. There are many alternative mobile payment methods using operating operator billing, NFC, embedded payments, credit cards and proximity payments. If Apple decides to enter the mobile payment market, it will be able to take advantage of its 600 million registered users with credit card details on file.

4. Mobile Apps & Portals: We have only seen the first generation of mobile apps and portals with most of them becoming obsolete within a few months of their launch. While Android and iOS are the platforms that will guarantee mobile developers an audience in the US and Europe, developers in much of the rest of the world also favor HTML5 over Apps. However, there will be a massive global shift in advertising and technology budgets towards the next generation apps and mobile portals.

5. Wearables & The Internet of Things: There is gold in the hills but there is still some time lag before we get there. From wearable smart glasses, watches and transplanted devices to funny named gizmos that control your heating at home, there is a big market for smart wireless technology and apps getting into everything including electronic devices, machines, clothes, medical devices, animals and humans. No wonder the technology is called “The Internet of Things.”

Patricia Kahill

is a Social Media, Content Creator and Marketer at Kahill Insights. A Development Practitioner who has no self talent but is driven by curiosity and passion; in a nutshell she is a Multipotentialite. She believes in God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit which makes her a Christian.

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