Mobile phones take over from the computer
During 2014 mobile phone sales are expected to reach 1.9 billion units. What is even more significant is that smart phones are expected to account for two-thirds of this total.
There is no more growth in the sale of PCs, that is desktop and laptop computers. Analysts think that the best case scenario is in fact that there will be some replacement PC sales. That’s a terminally serious death knell for the desktop computer industry.
An interesting talk by Mitch Joel at INBOUND included a chart that showed that there are more people who have phones than people who have electricity. And in fact there are a lot more phone owners than people who have access to safe drinking water. The 6 billion phone owners knock the close on 2 billion people with desktop/laptop computers out of the park.
Enjoy his talk here:
It’s all about mobility
Of course the laptop started the trend. A laptop, especially Apple’s Air range, allowed people to easily pack that ultra thin laptop into a shoulder bag and set it up where ever one wanted. Still, one needed a table top, at the least, to get into a more comfortable position. Standing and reading ones mail while waiting in a queue was never going to be easy to do even with an Air.
It’s the ease and speed with which the phone has taken over the computing function that is truly astonishing. Apple’s first generation iPhone was launched in January 2007 and went on sale at the end of June of that year.
Of course the smart phone, now available in a huge variety of makes and sizes, is more than just a computer. It’s a communication device with people and the entire environment. Whether chatting with friends, talking to clients, shopping, opening your car door, controlling the air con in the office, playing games or watching movies amongst tons of options. And you can do this wherever you are. Of course for many of these activities you need access to the internet
The internet connectivity is the crucial element
Ethan Marcotte has something really interesting to say about this during a recent interview. Link here. As marketers or builders of apps or websites for these mobile devices it’s not enough to be aware of the screen size that you are targeting your message to.
By virtue of the fact that your phone can tap into a WiFi spot near where you are standing, walking or sitting means that access is dependent on the speed of the service on offer. Most of these free WiFi zones are nowhere near the speed and capacity that you might have at your office or at home.
Add to that the cost of data downloads and slow speed if using the mobile phone network and you can see that your mobile shopper or visitor to your website is not going to have the same experience than if they were checking your site in the office.
Mobile phone users are that – mobile
When designing your website, your landing page, your mobile app or your online marketing campaigns via social media be aware that your mobile user, who is leaving her desktop computer in favour of her mobile gadget is going to have not only a small screen size but also a slow connection when viewing your online offerings.
Few words, less gorgeously big file sized images and shorter easier to fill in forms will give you better results than your media heavy website that you have in mind. Keep it short and light and you have a winner.