The hottest digital real estate is still up for grabs.
The competition is fierce to control the mall in consumers’ pockets and the victor — should one player gain a commanding share of the mobile market — will be in prime position to shape the next phase of commerce.
Tech giants and brands alike are scrambling to develop apps and optimize their Web sites to accommodate an on-the-go consumer who expects a seamless experience. The rush to control the channel has been front and center this week. First, Wal-Mart Stores Inc.’s @WalmartLabs bought shopping app Stylr in its drive to improve its mobile commerce. Then, on Wednesday, Amazon entered the ultracompetitive fray by launching its own smartphone, the Fire. For Amazon, the goal is less about the device than it is to grab a greater share of mobile commerce.
And no wonder — mobile is on course to dominate digital traffic. Cisco’s state of the Internet report this month said mobile devices would make up 57 percent of all Internet traffic by 2018, up from 33 percent last year.
“No one has really won mobile yet,” John Mulligan, Target Corp.’s interim chief executive officer, said during an appearance on Bloomberg TV last month.
Mulligan said that is where Target believes it can gain an edge over the likes of Amazon — although Amazon clearly won’t cede any ground easily. Jeff Bezos, founder and ceo of the e-commerce giant, introduced the Fire, which ships on July 25 and is available in 32GB and 64GB versions retailing for $199 and $299, respectively. The phone features a 4.7-inch screen, unlimited storage of photos in Amazon Cloud Drive and a Firefly tool that uses the phone’s camera to identify things in the physical world, such as QR codes, books and games.
The company already has a strong position in mobile, at one time controlling up to a third of mobile commerce, according to reports. But as smartphone adoption soared and more retailers enhanced their mobile experience, Amazon’s share has declined, according to Matthew Nemer, an analyst at Wells Fargo. He estimated Amazon and eBay each command about 20 percent of mobile sales, and that eBay is now “pretty close” behind Amazon.
EBay’s Marketplaces and PayPal each exceeded $20 billion in mobile volume; Amazon, which didn’t respond to a request for comment, doesn’t break down sales by channel.
Based on a study earlier this year in cooperation with Forrester Research, Shop.org on Wednesday singled out the mobile “movers and shakers,” pointing to Amazon, Facebook, Wal-Mart, Starbucks, Rue La La, ModCloth, eBay and Groupon. The diversity shows that there are many ways for businesses to use mobile to attract customers.
The most-buzzed-about mobile player is Uber — established as a mobile-first transportation company in 2009 that is valued at $18 billion — even as it hits some road bumps in expanding into Europe.
Then there’s Domino’s, which is seen as implementing forward-thinking strategies in mobile that have helped make the 54-year-old pizza chain more relevant.
@tradesy is turning the concept of a showroom upside down with its new space in Santa Monica. Here, the company plans to hold events, art exhibits and a showcase rare fashion pieces like this Louis Vuitton boxing set. Get all the details on Tradesy’s first showroom on WWD.com. #wwdnews
Spotted last night at the @erdem x @hm launch event: Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones, Kirsten Dunst and Selma Blair. The party, which took place in LA, also marked the opening of their pop-up shop. “I was interested in creating a collection that wasn’t in any way disposable. It was about pieces you’d create and keep forever, things that have a permanence to it,” designer Erdem Moralioglu said. #wwdeye (📷: Katie Jones)
Renee Zellweger in yellow in 2001 and again in 2017. Chosen as one of the 12 @pantone Leading Spring Colors (and dubbed “Meadowlark”), it only makes sense that the bright hue stands the test of time and is making a resurgence this season, seen already on stars like @blakelively and @gigihadid. (📷: Donato Sardello & @rexfeatures) #wwdfashion #tbt
Dior’s 70th anniversary celebration continues with a new exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. “Christian Dior,” which is scheduled to run through March 18, takes a look at the founders tenure from 1947 to 1057 and feature 40 designs. Pictured here is an evening gown from the Ailée, fall 1948-49 haute couture collection. #wwdfashion (📷: Brian Boyle)
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews