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Four billion people are buying new smartphones every two years, massively outpacing the PC industry (where we buy 1.6 billion PCs every five years). Our desire for the most powerful, newest tech in our pocket is the beginning of a symbiotic merger of between human and machine.
Check out the explosive growth curves below. They demonstrate why tech will infiltrate you, your business, your family, and every aspect of your life. How many of us don’t let our mobile phones get out of our sight? How often are they more than a meter or two from our grasp?

Graph Above: Growth of smartphones vs. PCs (source: Andreesen-Horowitz)  Smartphones and tablets now take up half of the consumer electronics industry.

Smartphones and tablets now take up half of the consumer electronics industry.

Graph Above: Growth of mobile as a percent of consumer electronics (source: Andreesen-Horowitz)

Infinite Computing & Sensing

The power of smartphones comes from the unique mix of connectivity, computing and sensors it brings into our lives. Let’s take a look.

With a glimpse of what’s to come, Sprint has already demonstrated an over-the-air speed of 1 gigabit per second at their Silicon Valley lab.

  1. Connectivity: consider that in 1991, early 2G networks clocked in at a hundred kilobits per second. A decade later, 3G networks hit one megabit per second, while today’s 4G networks sport up to eight megabits per second. In February 2014, Sprint announced plans for Sprint Spark, a super-high-speed network capability able to deliver 50 to 60 megabits per second to your mobile phone. Huwaei is working on 5G for piloting Singapore’s Self Driving Vehicles program at near-zero-time and near-zero-distance possibilities.
  2. Computing: Just three or four decades ago, if you wanted to access a thousand core processors, you’d need to be the chairman of MIT’s computer science department or the secretary of the U.S. Defense Department. Today the average chip in your cell phone can perform about a billion calculations per second. Yet today has nothing on tomorrow.

As MIT Technology review points out, “Generations of chip-making technology are known by the size of the smallest structure they can write into a chip. The current best is 14 nanometers, and by 2020, in order to keep up with Moore’s Law, the industry will need to be down to five nanometers. This is the point where IBM hopes nanotubes can step in. The most recent report from the microchip industry group the ITRS says the so-called five-nanometer ‘node’ is due in 2019.”

Beyond the processing power in your phone (a super computer by all standards), your smartphone has access to truly infinite computational power on the cloud over its multi-megabit linkage.

  1. Sensors: Sensors are the real magic. The growing suite of sensors in our phones is extending our abilities, slowly making us superhuman. The smartphone is our future JARVIS, making us future Tony Starks. For example, in an iPhone, the basics include a proximity sensor, ambient light sensor, accelerometer (senses the orientation of the phone), magnetometer (measures the strength and/or direction of the magnetic field), and a gyroscope.

Of course we also have an incredible 8-megapixel camera and microphone to look and listen.Beyond what’s packed into the phone, your device can connect to the Internet of Everything surrounding you, extending its “sensing capabilities” by orders of magnitude.

What’s next? Sensors that measure your blood chemistries, the quality of the air your breathing, the nutrient content of the food you’re eating, the even the DNA of the food you’re eating (is it shark or swordfish?).

Every new sensor creates new business opportunities

The Android app store has 1.3 million apps. Apple’s app store has 1.2 million. While a significant portion of these apps are useless, more and more truly powerful apps are being developed that take advantage of the sensing and computing capabilities of smartphones. And these apps are sticky. We spend a lot of time on them.

Heck, today there’s more time is spent on mobile apps than on the entire Web.

More time is spent in mobile apps than on the entire web

Small teams can leverage the mobile platform in big ways

I often talk about exponential organizations – small teams of people leveraging exponential technologies and resources to scale quickly and disrupt slow-moving incumbent businesses.

Mobile and infinite computing are one of the core drivers allowing this to happen. Instagram was acquired for a $1 billion with a team of 13 employees.There are 1.5 trillion SMS messages sent between smartphones globally every year. WhatsApp, an app that was built by a team of 30 people and acquired by Facebook for $19 billion, processes 7.2 trillion messages a year.In 2000, a business with 100 employees would need to raise $10 million to reach 1 million people.Today, we see many examples of teams of around 10 people raising $1 million and reaching 10 million people.

Or, in the case of the silly app “YO,” one person raises $0 and reaches 1 million people in months. How are you leveraging these platforms? The opportunity these technologies present to solve the world’s grand challenges are incredible. Don’t build dumb apps. Build problem-solving apps!

The article above is re-written by the courtesy of Peter Diamandis.

New business opportunities > new business- and IT strategies

Instead of trying to cope up with new developments and increasing time-to-market timelines,  organizations experience that real (disruptive) innovation has to be realized so fast that the even the immune system of an organization, or even governmental laws, cannot react in time. Therefore CEO’s are realizing that more and more they have to innovate “on the edge” of their current organization in order to be successful, including direct reporting lines and responsibility.

New activities need to be (IT) sourced in a way that they are easily scalable, up as well as down. Saas type application solutions and Cloud Storage are important and critical success factors. At METRI we are advising our customers about an IT strategy based upon their Business strategy and help to realize the right IT sourcing strategy, all based upon facts and experience.

Feel free to contact METRI to discuss the IT impacts of new business opportunities and METRI’s other related sourcing and benchmarking, fact based, advisory and analyzing services.


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