Major news websites are already visited more often from mobile devices than from PCs. Anyone who wants to communicate successfully needs to tap into the mobile market. Limiting communication to fixed access via PC means missing out on a growing potential source of productivity. It is also important to involve both staff and customers in mobile processes and IT systems, and to make use of new technologies.
As the true nerve centre of the mobile world, the personal smartphone is ideally placed to offer additional functions such as entry solutions, proof of identity, credit cards or customer interaction and loyalty programmes.
In addition, remote control applications can be used to control company buildings or production machinery and local services such as taxi services or restaurant and concert bookings. Brand new business opportunities are also emerging – not least thanks to new technologies.
Innovative developments such as beacon technology are facilitating new forms of location-based communication services and strengthening customer relations through digital interaction, e.g. augmented reality. Through individual real-time distribution of tailor-made information and offers, along with detailed analysis of customer behaviour, location-based solutions create relevant customer experiences with the objective of triggering actions and stimulating consumption. Real-life experience is therefore enhanced through digital smartphone content – the offline and online worlds are converging more and more.
However, the mobility trend is driven not only by new technologies or the needs of companies and customers, but also by employees. They want to be able to use the same devices and functionalities while they work as they have come to appreciate in their private lives.
However, the relatively small screens and limitations in areas such as text input create a need for new applications (apps) or websites optimised for mobile devices. Both are specifically designed for mobile use. For businesses, this investment often has two-fold benefits: since individual users and their specific needs are central, processes that have grown over time can be cut back to the bare essentials and therefore fundamentally improved.
Another increasing challenge for virtually all organisations is infrastructure. Growing numbers of perpetually changing devices must be integrated into the company network and managed. Similarly, apps need to be designed so that they can be launched and taken out of service quickly.
A competent technology partner knows the opportunities and challenges of mobility and is able to anticipate change. Smartglasses like Google Glass, voice control like Siri or wearables like the Apple Watch will open completely new business models.