You may have noticed that mobile is everywhere, and it’s poised to take over the world’s technology. Experts estimate that by the year 2017, there will be more mobile devices than people on the planet. Is your business ready for an all-mobile world?
Here are some of the changes we can expect from a shift to mobile, and how your company can be prepared for the new digital landscape.
Global connectivity will spread
As mobile technology grows, it will connect more people in more places. Many of the newest mobile users will be from developing countries in Africa, the Middle East, and particularly the Asia Pacific region, where mobile users are expected to represent more than half the world’s total by 2018 with 2.6 billion.
This expansion of mobile technology is good news all around. Research from Deloitte finds that increasing mobile access has a direct, positive effect on the GDP of any country, and developing nations in particular.
For companies, the spread of mobile development means a potentially greater reach—businesses can tap new global customers, suppliers, and even employees working remotely via mobile. Mobile can serve to bridge geological distance and bring the world business community closer together.
Users will have multiple devices
Having more mobile devices than people in the world won’t mean that every person will have a mobile device. Instead, experts estimate that by 2018, approximately 64 percent of the world’s population, or 7.6 billion people, will be mobile users — and between them they’ll have more than 10 billion devices.
What will the average mobile user look like? A typical user in developed countries like the United States today may have a laptop, smartphone, and/or tablet, and possibly a wearable tech device such as a personal fitness tracker. But over the next few years, mobile will shift away from not-so-portable technology and bring in more “smart” devices — gadgets like Google Glass, authentication chips embedded in jewelry, augmented reality devices, and clothing sensors.
For your company, this means having a secure IT infrastructure and updated personal tech policies in place to handle the influx of various mobile devices.
Laptops will become tech casualties
The gradual shift away from PCs to the more portable laptops was less a revolution, and more a partial replacement of format — like the movement from cassette tapes to CDs. But mobile technology is taking over faster and further than laptops, and people are abandoning ship on the traditional computer in any form, and turning to powerful, pocket-sized devices that do it all and more. Overall, the growth of mobile adoption has been eight times faster than web adoption.
The laptop is already on the decline. Today, 50 percent of mobile users say that their smartphones or tablets are either their primary or exclusive means of getting online. The rapid adoption of tablets have left PCs in the dust, and tablet use is poised to overtake PC and laptop usage by 2015.
If your company isn’t yet prepared to accommodate mobile-only employees, it’s time to consider the infrastructure you’ll need to make it happen. Consider mobile apps, secure networks, and even workstations designed for non-PC users.
Video will dominate mobile traffic
With the rise of mobile comes a correlating increase in the amount of video people watch. Video accounted for 53 percent of mobile traffic in 2013, and by 2018 it’s expected to hit 69 percent — and keep going up. Mobile devices make it easy to watch and share video.
With regard to your company, this means video should be considered a primary category for social media, marketing campaigns, and even communicating with employees. The majority of people your business connects with will have mobile access and watch plenty of video. So if you don’t already have a video marketing or communication strategy in place, now is the time to begin.
Mobile growth can equate to increased reach and revenue growth for your company, if you’re ready to take advantage of the changes. Review your long-term goals for mobile, and make the changes needed to capitalize on tomorrow’s all-mobile world.