A thoughtful post from Benedict Evans at Andreessen Horowitz explaining how we are moving into a mobile native world. Companies can free themselves from building applications that can run on PC's or feature phones. This allows them to make better, more engaging apps that fully utilise all the functionality available on smartphones.
We are starting to see mobile native as a driver of M&A across a number of deals. For example, in the gaming space Activision Blizzard spent $5.9bn on mobile gaming powerhouse, King. Clearly the large customer base was key but so was acquiring mobile native capability.
We expect to see mobile native become an increasingly important factor in M&A over the next two years.
A couple of years ago internet companies moved from having a mobile team and a mobile strategy to what they called ‘mobile first’. Instead of building a product and deciding how and if it would work on mobile, new things are build for mobile by default, and don’t necessarily make their way back to the desktop. Now, though, I think we can see an evolution beyond ‘mobile first’. What happens if you just forget about the PC altogether? But also, what happens if you forget about featurephones? What happens if you presume all of the sophistication that a modern smartphone has and a PC does not, and if you also presume that, with 650m iPhones in use and 2.5bn smartphones in total, you can build a big company without thinking about the low end anymore?