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It's REAL: Global mobile ad revenue nearly doubled in 2012

Last year's global mobile ad revenue statistics confirmed what everyone is talking about: the bright future of mobile advertising. A new report from IAB and IHS, "Global Mobile Advertising Revenue", revealed that global mobile ad revenue increased 82.8% in 2012 from 3.769 billion Euros to 6.889 billion Euros (about US$8.9 billion).

Although all channels grew, search advertising (52.8%) continues to take the lion's share of the pie at the expense of messaging advertising (8.5%). Both search and display advertising grew at rates of >80% while messaging advertising grew at 40%.

While Asia Pacific (2.769 billion Euros) leads North America (2.743 billion Euros) by a trickle, its growth has lost momentum and the latter's more rapid expansion will probably mean that it will overtake Asia Pacific as the largest revenue generator by geography next year. Comparatively, Europe, Middle East and Africa, and Latin America trail much further behind, making up 20% of the market.

Mobile display advertising in Asia Pacific alone makes up nearly half (49%) of the global mobile display ad spend. On the other hand, in mobile search advertising, North America has already overtaken Asia Pacific as the biggest player by geography. Interestingly, Latin America at 66.7% remains predominantly messaging-centric when it comes to mobile advertising.

In Asia Pacific, mobile search advertising and mobile display advertising are neck to neck at around 47% each, leaving only < 5% for messaging advertising.