The immense popularity of smartphones, and the huge revenue streams they provide their carriers, has created hyper competition in consumer advertising. Each carrier claiming to have the first or fastest 4G has led everyone to believe that 4G is all around us, when this is far from the case.
What results is an inflated expectation of service and speed, which inevitably disappoints. The sad part is that 4G, actual 4G, is really, really fast, making it much easier to find anything and use any application that requires a data connection. Moreover, it is a more pleasant experience using the phone, and people would be more likely to try out features that they might not normally use just to see the speed of it.
But each carrier cannot afford to lose out and be the only one not providing 4G, so they all jump into the fray. Once 4G arrives to most (think about how sporadic 3G coverage still can be) the biggest winners will be rich media mobile advertisers.
With faster speeds comes an increase in use, as people who want to watch videos can do it much easier without terrible quality or endless buffering, so people will watch more videos. This translates directly into more impressions for advertisers, as well as more options. Mobile video advertising will be a big driver of digital out of home grow in the coming years. But by then it will probably be called 5G.
Tony Hymes is the Editor of the Digital Out Of Home industry website DOOH.com. He produces introductory videos of the companies working across the space from digital signage hardware providers to content companies, DOOH networks, consultants, and software groups. Tony Hymes writes extensively about the strategies behind DOOH advertising, digital signage networks and deployments, and customer engagement trends.