Digital advertising in the post-smartphone era

The future of advertising is about moving beyond the smartphone and making pertinent recommendations to consumers via an ecosystem of devices

Digital advertising in the post-smartphone era

Every decade, the Information Age sees a paradigm shift. The hosting era, the PC era, and today’s mobile internet era… but this is coming to an end, and something new is about to emerge. 

Smartphone penetration in Europe has reached an incredible 78 per cent. They’re the remote controls to our lives and, with so many of us having them, market growth has plateaued. Customers are existing users who want to upgrade, kickstarting new generations of smartphones that can talk to more devices around them, faster and more seamlessly than before. This leads to opportunities for marketers and that's where Huawei Ads comes in.

An explosion in IoT devices
The more our needs and behaviours change, the more we rely on our smartphone as the hub to help facilitate that change. But with the growth of the internet of things (IoT), we will soon be able to access most of the apps and services we need independently of our smartphones.

“We might be reaching the post-smartphone era,” says Dr Jaime Gonzalo, vice president Huawei mobile services Europe. “This doesn´t mean mobile phones will disappear, it means they might not be the only neural brain that congregates our digital lives.” 

The world has been talking about IoT for years, but a democratised infrastructure has never been in place to allow mainstream growth. But that has progressed. 

Over the next five years, we’ll see a huge shift and the number of IoT devices per user will grow from two a decade ago to around 10. As this hyperconnectivity evolves, so will the level of information out there, with new opportunities to understand what users want and need. The touchpoints in the customer’s journey will grow exponentially beyond the smartphone, creating a host of new advertising opportunities for businesses.

“This connected ecosystem will be accessible through a super device: a dynamic combination of hardware that multiplies the usability of each of those devices when used separately,” says Gonzalo. “The future of the ad industry is not about relentlessly pushing ads to the user, but it’s about anticipating consumers’ needs and making recommendations across these touchpoints. Whether you are offered to book a taxi through the convenience of an app, or creating a playlist through a specific music streaming service.”

Challenges as consumers opt out
However, this ecosystem only works if the service can match the right user audience. New rules and regulations have given the power back to consumers, which means users are now extremely selective about who they consent to track their data. They need to give explicit permission to be tracked, and they are opting out.

As a result, the industry believes that ad targeting accuracy will decrease, predicting a significant increase in spending to reach the same goals as 2021. Companies are starting to explore alternative solutions to the classic ad networks to avoid such increased marketing spend.

Access to first-party data has to be part of any future campaign strategy. “We understand the pain of users being interrupted by unwanted advertising and we want to defend users’ privacy,” says Gonzalo. “Huawei takes extremely seriously the protection of our users’ privacy.

Huawei only collects first-party data through consent and doesn't process personal data unnecessarily. Instead, they prioritise usage data.

He adds: “For example: if a user likes listening to romantic songs, or if you like blue wallpapers for your smartphone. It matters if there is a flight to take or that they are on a car journey. Then we can use that contextual situation to introduce ads in a helpful, non-intrusive way.”

A new solution 
Huawei Ads is a powerful solution for advertisers who want to reach both Huawei and non-Huawei users. A large portion of the new Huawei-device users cannot be reached through traditional ad networks. This is complemented by Huawei’s product strategy. Not only is Huawei in the top-three providers for smartphones and tablets, but its successful diversification into wearables, audio, PC, tablets, headsets and more supports its hyper-connected ecosystem.

Huawei’s audience has 40 million monthly active users in Europe alone, and it aims to work with customers who recognise that it’s important to target a relevant audience, while also taking into consideration an ecosystem of different touchpoints. “The future is device differentiation,” says Gonzalo. “The smartphone will coexist with other autonomous IoT devices, and it’s not 'if – but how fast – this will take place.”  

Five reasons to try Huawei Ads

  1. Greater reach – Access all new Huawei devices’ users, that cannot be reached through traditional ad networks.
  2. It's risk free – Test the platform for free, and with no compromise.
  3. Get into China – If your business strategy includes China, Huawei Ads is one of the strongest platforms that connects the West with the East.
  4. Be part of a less saturated market – Huawei Ads can help smaller companies that are usually eclipsed by bigger players.
  5. Preserve privacy – Onboard a privacy-respectful environment, in which usability data counts more than personal data, turning ads into contextual recommendations, and offering a better and safer user experience.

Visit to find out more, or for developers and agencies to sign up to the site. 


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