The evolution of the mobile phone from a personal communication tool to an information and social hub opened a range of possibilities for every industry. The ability to research, book and change travel arrangements, shop and avail customer services at all times makes the mobile phone look like an ideal tool for people of all kinds. It is argued that the mobile phone and its recent enhancements may take the efficiency of social interactions, online shopping and travel to a new level where Mobile technology may have another immense impact on the consumer buying cycle, hence on the way we do business.
Since mobile telephones were introduced they have reduced in size from unwieldy ‘brick’s’ with one function (to make voice calls) to very portable, highly sophisticated smart devices which in most cases act as the hub of our daily lives. The mobile phone has incorporated itself into that small list of items we must always have with us (for instance keys and wallet). This suggests an exciting opportunity for every industry and many companies have already started investigating possibilities at all stages of the consumer buying cycle.
But are there real possibilities? What and where could you be looking towards? How should you go about investing in this new digital strategy? What opportunities and challenges exist? Who has already invested in Mobile and how? Does the technology exist to enable what you want to actually do happen?
One of the fundamental forces the way we operate is the smartphone. eBay launched its iphone application in 2009, and in the first year it did $600 million in volume. In 2010 it did between $1.5billion and $2billion. More than 14 million downloaded eBay’s iPhone application - by far the largest m-commerce application. It’s the power of mobile phone.