The desire by consumers to compute from any point at anytime with minimal disruption or hassle remains one of the main drivers behind the mobile and wireless market. Investment in this technology is no longer the domain of the larger corporate player or seasoned mobile professional, the advent of social networking platforms and reduction in cost of manufacture of mobile products globally means that there is more technology available and a far wider consumer base.
An ‘always-on’ mindset, reliable connectivity and the incentive to be a part of the growing online social network are pushing the end user to seriously consider the variety of mobile products now available.
The fact is that mobile computing has become the mainstay of modern society. Very little is done these days that does not involve the application of technology at some level.
In the past mobile phones, notebooks and PDAs dominated mobile infrastructure use. The integration of mobile devices with networks and true wireless communication was restricted to the corporate sector and possibly SoHo environment. Personal individual mobility was really limited to the cellular phones and notebooks – aspects such as Bluetooth and infra-red did not make much of an impact.
With time, innovation and an increasing demand, manufacturers and suppliers have radically bolstered volume and quality of product. The result has been devices that have significantly higher capacity to store data/ material, which offers the user more versatility and the ability to manipulate and share material.
One could argue that the concept of ‘triple play’ or the communication of video, voice and data over a single channel, is evidence of the extent to which mobility has developed. There is no doubt that triple play will underpin corporate strategy going forward.
It is interesting to note that in years gone by decision makers grappled with the concept of a mobile professional. The question of whether people could or should be able to access and contribute towards a business remotely was upmost in the minds of managers, as was the issue of security.
The market has come a long way since then and security software space has matured. Solutions that are being releases are a great deal more sophisticated and there is a deeper appreciation for the fact that more incidents occur from within an organisation or business.
This desire to share and communicate in real-time, using a variety of devices, has also coincided with- and fuelled the growth of social networking.
The current debate within media and technology circles over the validity and value of platforms like WikiPedia, Facebook, MySpace, YouTube and WikiLeaks reflects the level at which social networks have permeated every level of society.
Representatives of WikiLeaks continue to be embroiled in legal wrangling with authorities over the publishing of what has been described in media reports as ‘sensitive information’.
Data management, online communication and regulation of channels are what characterises the modern workplace environment. The need to establish firm control over this facet of business management is emphasised by ongoing aspects such as cloud computing and virtual-based services.
By all accounts it is clear that mobile and wireless infrastructure, devices and applications will continue to influence communication and operations going forward. All indications are that the supply channel will have to remain proactive and alert to new developments.
Whatever happens, we expect growing levels of activity, competition and energy!
By Robert Sussman, joint CEO, Integr8 Group