Social networking and sites such as myspace, facebook and webjam revolutionised our interactions with the web over the last five years and it is now likely that this is moving to the mobile area.
It should not come as a surprise for anyone following market dynamics and consumer behavior in Japan and Korea (and China....). After all Mobage-town is Japan's 2nd largest website (per page views) while being mobile only, and a large chunk of CyWorld subscribers in Korea pay an additional fee to access it from their mobile.
A recent study by Nielsen shows that this is now developing in the US and Europe with 1.6-1.7% of mobile users in the US and the UK accessing social networking sites from their mobile, while numbers are lower for Continental Europe (0.5%). If you think this is negligible, think again. If you apply this penetration to the installed 3G base and to users subscribing to a data plan, you end up with quite a sizable penetration! Even more interesting, if you look at the numbers starting from people using social networks, it appears that a quarter were also accessing their profile/sites from their mobiles in the UK.
Using social networks can be as addictive as a Blackberry so it should not be too surprising. As MySpace and Facebook also lead the pack in terms of mobile usage, the key question becomes whether there is some room for some mobile driven social networks or if the "incumbents" will simply also succeed on the mobile.
One key output though is that mobile access will become more and more important. So Webjam, when do we get one ? ;)