I’ve just returned from New York having attending the Ericsson 2014 Media Summit this week, and it was enlightening to get a glimpse of what different experts predict for the future of consumers and how they might behave.
Looking forward to 2020, what can we expect? First of all the world’s population is set to continue its enormous growth. Although it was stated that it’s anticipated the world’s population will grow to 9 billion (I thought this sounded exaggerated given that we are currently ‘just’ around 7.2b). We are expected to have some 50 billion connected devices, according to Ulf Ewaldsson, senior VP and CTO, Ericsson.
We will be a very networked society. Our cars – which we probably won’t own but access when we want them in some sort of rental arrangement – will have Wi-Fi connectivity. Our society will be extremely well connected. In fact, so many of our devices will be connected to the internet as part of everyday living.
When we engage with brands, we’ll expect more personalisation in the whole transaction cycle. The personalisation of what we want, how we want it and when will become much more commonplace in how we transact.
There seemed to be an impact of IP, web and cloud technology on TV platforms and video delivery in a very real way. IP, web and cloud technology means it will use world’s best practice for speedy solution delivery. We will continue to utilise more data and expect speeds of delivery to improve to meet our growing demand.
Watching television will mean we watch what we want, when we want, and with the flexibility of watching on multiple devices.
Our carriers too will need to respond quickly to consumer demands when it comes to plans and affordability of choice, if they wish to keep their customers.
Operators too, like Ericsson, need and have moved quickly to survive and thrive. Making changes is not easy.
As I was reminded at the conference, the world changes quickly. No one really knows with any certainty what the future holds. The world too will seem to get smaller as each provider is able to evaluate more easily the worth of a customer, and whether they are getting best value from their relationship together.
In short, buckle up. This is not a ride into the future where we know how it will finish.
Perhaps the most exciting part is knowing where the relationship may have started without knowing what the end will hold. For now, sit back and learn as much as you can about how to ride this exciting digital phenomenon into the future.
Dennis Benjamin is the founder and chief executive of mobile apps specialists AppsWiz and the Informatel Group. He is an expert in the areas of mobile trends, mobile apps, apps for businesses, entrepreneurship, and startups.