Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : March 6th 2014 Contents MARCH 2014 • WEEK ONE www.guardian.co.tt BUSINESS GUARDIAN
COMMENTARY | BG17
Do you find yourself using your
mobile phone a lot more than
your PC of late? If so, you re
Demand for mobile data and broadband
services is growing at a remarkable pace. With
this increasing appetite for mobile data, there
is substantial need for new approaches and
new business models for providing new cus-
tomer experiences and monetising mobile data
Shifting consumer behaviour
According to a new Nielsen report, the aver-
age American now spends more time in front
of their smartphone than in front of a PC.
Last December, American smartphone owners
spent an average of 34 hours and 21 minutes
using their devices, spread out amongst an
average of seven daily sessions each. American
online PC usage, meanwhile, was a cumulative
26 hours, 58 minutes per month.
And what, exactly, did they spend that time
doing? The largest chunk of smartphone
online-time was using social media apps like
Twitter and Facebook (29 per cent), while just
12 per cent of screen time was devoted to more
traditional communications. Productivity apps
(11 per cent), games (nine per cent) and enter-
tainment (six per cent) round out the top five.
Innovating service delivery
This shift is significant for any business
serious about innovating in service delivery.
Engaging in new mobile commerce initiatives
involves not only new technologies, but new
services, and business models as well. Mobile
service delivery is quite different from tradi-
tional e-commerce. Smartphones, tablets and
other mobile devices, impose very different
constraints than desktop and laptop computers.
The ecosystem and value chain for mobile
commerce is unique and evolving in a manner
quite distinct from e-commerce as a whole.
Mobile commerce has experienced an explosion
of new applications, services, and vendors
during 2013. This trend is expected to accel-
erating in 2014 and beyond as solutions to
optimise mobile payments, banking, shopping,
and integrated advertising/commerce are
Mobile opportunities for business
With faster mobile broadband service and
mobile penetration rates in excess of 100 per
cent in most Caribbean markets, the service
delivery innovation and revenue generation
opportunities from proliferation of smart-
phones in the region are limitless.
Here are four opportunities companies can
• Mobile Payments: mobile payment services
stand to open up a world of opportunity to
the masses of mobile users and a release poten-
tial windfall for the businesses that can mon-
etise these opportunities. There are many
mobile payment methods available, including
operating to operator billing, NFC, embedded
payments, credit cards and proximity pay-
Supporting legislation will be needed to
protect consumers and businesses alike. Local
mobile payment platforms and facilitation by
local financial institutions will be necessary
to keep the economic gains from mobile pay-
ments within the domestic economy.
• Mobile apps and portals: A massive global
shift in advertising and technology budgets
towards the next generation apps and mobile
portals is already underway. Firms that invest
in mobile enabling there digital presence stand
to benefit tremendously from these changes.
The combination of" mobile broadband and
more powerful and ubiquitous mobile devices
creates a very fertile ground for mobile-enabled
service providers." From banks and government
agencies to school and small business operators,
organisations in every sector can benefit.
• Mobile advertising: Mobile advertising
services are set to grow to US$18 billion in
2014. More companies are starting to under-
stand benefit of reaching people through adver-
tising on mobile devices.
Mobile advertising is not a fad. It is a medi-
um that will reshape the way companies inter-
act with consumers and they way the measure
the effectiveness of their advertising invest-
ments. A big challenge facing advertising adver-
tisers is understanding what constitutes effec-
tive mobile advertising. Mastering the mobile
advertising will be worth it in the long run.
• Wearables and the Internet of things: From
smart glasses, smart watches and other wear-
able devices to devices and gadgets that control
your home, car and office, the market for
smart wireless technology and apps is enor-
mous. Incredibly shrinking, personalised and
mobile gadgets are finding their way into
everything, including clothes, medical devices,
athletic gear, and even animals and humans.
No wonder the new buzzword is "The Internet
of Every Thing."
The future is mobile
As cellular networks become more data-
centric, portal devices such as smartphones,
tablets, and in the near future, even devices
like heads-up displays and wearable gadgets
like smart-watches, will provide a mobile
The implication for businesses and service
innovation is radical and transformational.
Communication service providers focused
on developing mobile and cloud-based serv-
ices that facilitate anywhere, anytime trans-
actions will be the leaders in this revolution.
So, why should businesses invest in the
mobile future today?" Google s Chairman
Eric Schmidt answered the question well
recently, when he said, "Because people are
fundamentally better off with a better and
smarter and more empowered, if you will,
Bevil Wooding is the chief knowledge
officer of Congress WBN (www.congress-
wbn.org), a values-based, international char-
ity and the executive director of BrightPath
Foundation, a technology education non-
profit organisation. Reach him on Twitter
@bevilwooding or on facebook.com/bevil-
wooding or contact via e-mail at technol-
Mobile opportunities for business
Why mobile is
the new Web
The implication for businesses and service innovation is radical and transformational.
Communication service providers focused on developing mobile and cloud-based services
that facilitate anywhere, anytime transactions will be the leaders in this revolution.
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