The an always-online culture. Always online is already here

The futureof social communications will be shaped by an always-online culture. Alwaysonline is already here and will set the trend going forward. Totalconnectivity, the Internet you can take with you wherever you go, is growingunstoppably. There is no turning back for global digitalization.Innovationis shaping and will continue to shape the future of social communications.

Itis already a reality that Internet connections are increasingly mobile. Asurvey we conducted in early 2013 in partnership with Ipsos found that 94percent of Tuenti users aged 16 to 35 owned cell phones, 84 percent of usersconnected to the Internet using their phones, and 47 percent had mobile datasubscriptions for connecting to the Internet. A total of 74 percent of usersreported connecting to the Internet from their phone on a daily basis, while 84percent did so at least weekly. Only 13 percent did not use their phones toconnect to the Internet, and that percentage is decreasing every day.MobileInternet use alters the pattern of device usage; the hitherto familiar ways ofaccessing the Internet are changing too.

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The smartphone activities taking upthe most time (over three hours a day) include instant messaging (38%), socialmedia use (35%), listening to music (24%), and web browsing (20%). Theactivities taking up the least time (under five minutes a day) are: SMS texting(51%), watching movies (43%), reading and writing e-mail (38%), and talking onthe phone (32%). Things are still changing.Smartphonesare gaining ground in everyday life. Many of the purposes formerly served byother items now involve using our smartphones. Some 75 percent of young peoplereported having replaced their MP3 player with their phone, 74 percent usetheir phone as an alarm clock, 70 percent use it as their camera, and 67percent use it as their watch.Just abouteverything in the world of the Internet still lies ahead of us, and mobilecommunications as we know them must be reinvented by making them more digital.

The future will be shaped by innovation converging with the impact of mobility.This applies not just to social media but to the Internet in general,particularly in the social communications field. I feel that many people do notunderstand what we are doing and have no idea of the potential development ofcompanies like ours at the global level. Right now, there may be somebody outthere, in some corner of the world, developing the tool that will turn theInternet upside down all over again. The tool that will alter our day-to-daylife once more. Creating more opportunities, providing new benefits toindividuals, bringing more individual and collective well-being.

Just ten yearsago, social media did not exist; in the next ten years, something elseradically new will emerge. There are many areas in which products, processes,and services can be improved or created afresh. The future is brimming withopportunities, and the future of the Internet has only just begun.