Journerdism

Will Sullivan's guide to global mobile, tablet & emerging tech ideas

July 5, 2016
by Will Sullivan
Comments Off on Trends on Tuesday: IoT Connected Devices Expected to Surpass Mobile Phones by 2018

Trends on Tuesday: IoT Connected Devices Expected to Surpass Mobile Phones by 2018

(This is another of my DigitalGov columns that I’m cross-posting here to keep an archive and share knowledge.) 

International telecommunications network operator, Ericsson, released their Mobility Report around the future of mobile recently with a bunch of interesting data around the future of telecommunications and mobile.

The surprise star of the report is not mobile phones though—although it will continue to grow, especially in emerging markets where it hasn’t reached saturation like it has in the U.S.—it’s the Internet Of Things (IoT), which is projected to surpass mobile phones by 2018 according to Ericsson.

In the next 5 years, Ericsson projects that the PC/Laptop/Tablet, mobile phone and fixed phones devices will remain relatively flat in growth, with the highest growth at 3 percent for mobile phones. Though for IoT devices, the report projects growth from 22 to 27 percent each year for the next 5 years for a collective 15.7 billion devices by 2021.

This includes cellular and noncellular (having an always-connected mobile connection vs. a WiFi connection) IoT devices. Ericsson believes the bulk of devices, 14.2 billion, will remain noncellular, compared to 1.5 billion cellular IoT devices in 2021. For comparison, Ericsson projects 8.6 billion mobile phone devices in the same year, up from the current 7.1 billion of today.

The report also contains a lot of global mobile data and some really nerdy network information around global networks, microweather, streaming and spectrum analysis if you want to dive deeper into the telecommunications industry.

July 5, 2016
by Will Sullivan
Comments Off on Trends on Tuesday: Key Trends for Government from Mary Meeker’s 2016 Internet Trends

Trends on Tuesday: Key Trends for Government from Mary Meeker’s 2016 Internet Trends

(This is another of my DigitalGov columns that I’m cross-posting here to keep an archive and share knowledge.) 

Internet strategist Mary Meeker delivered her 2016 Internet Trends report this month, and there are several key takeaways for government agencies to consider and continue tracking as our connected world continues to evolve:

  1. Mobile phone adoption and Internet growth is meeting saturation.Incremental global growth will continue (especially in India, which she called out for their wild expansion) but especially for Americans, most people that want to be on the Internet can be on the Internet. The last percentage point to get to 100% penetration is due to hard financial and cultural limitations or personal decisions. (Slides 5-16)
  2. Millennials are driving a lot of the change and mobile-only experiences. They account for 27% of the population and represent a tidal wave of the first generation of “digital natives” who don’t know of a world without the Internet. Their views and interaction with technology as they rise up in the workforce will shape the future of the Internet. (Slides 52-59)
  3. Connected cars are going to continue to grow. Meeker pointed out that the U.S. is one of the leading markets in adoption and innovation in this space, and she said the effort and investment being put forth from car makers and ride-sharing giants like Uber and Lyft are going to continue to drive growth. (Pun, intended.) (Slides 137 – 150)
  4. Messaging is the new mass market and mobile interface. Moving from simple emojis to advanced chat bots and business transactions, direct-to-consumer and peer-to-peer communication is the new mass market. Meeker posited that messaging would become the replacement for the home screen. (Slides 97-110). Learn more about bots and AI for government customer service at an upcoming DigitalGov event.
  5. Voice emerges as a new, important interface. Besides the personalized experience of messaging apps, voice is another new personalized vehicle for serving people—from simple searches to voice assistants like Amazon’s Alexa. The quality, accuracy and speed of voice interactions has dramatically increased across the major platforms to above 90% accuracy. As this continues to evolve, new experiences—previously thought of as far out ideas from Star Trek or the movie Her—may soon be in our houses and hands. (Slides 112 – 131)
  6. Data as a platform expands. Leveraging the continuously reducing cost of data and continually growing connectivity, the ability to use data to aggregate and improve people’s lives and increase efficiency is going to continue to grow. Government agencies specifically can use their massive amounts of data to help improve the lives of the public. (Slides 194-205)
  7. Privacy will exponentially become more important and difficult.With all the new Internet connected devices, from cars to the Internet of Things, and the wealth of data provided, information security and privacy is going to become an even larger issue to manage in the future, especially as standards are still emerging for the new platforms. Consumers’ comfort levels with who and how they share data seem to vary among generations, although most people probably don’t realize how much data major life platforms like Google and Facebook have about them. Data breaches have become a common part of life with almost everyone affected in the past couple years. Organizations—and especially government agencies—need to be at the forefront of managing security for the public, educating and evangelizing best practices. (Slides 206-212)

Read the full report and share it with your staff to plan how your agency will prepare for the future.

July 5, 2016
by Will Sullivan
Comments Off on Trends on Tuesday: The Next Revolution Is Here—Cars Are the New Mobile Devices

Trends on Tuesday: The Next Revolution Is Here—Cars Are the New Mobile Devices

(This is another of my DigitalGov columns that I’m cross-posting here to keep an archive and share knowledge.) 

Last week, Recode published an article focused on a recent report from industry consultant Chetan Sharma that found the largest number of new mobile activations in the first quarter of 2016 came from a ‘different’ kind of mobile tool—cars.

There are still a lot of phone and tablet mobile activations happening—31% and 23% of all activations, respectively—but for the first time, cars edged out the smaller mobile devices with 32% of new cellular activations.

That growth is going to expand exponentially: we’re reaching mobile phone saturationtablet growth has remained flat in recent years, and we’ve only just begun the connected car revolution.

With a software update automatically downloaded to their cars since late 2014, Tesla created the first fleet of self-driving vehicles (not fully autonomous, yet) live and on the road. Since then they’ve logged more than 780 million miles of data, adding another million miles every 10 hours.

Testing the Tesla autopilot (self driving mode), October 17, 2015.

Marc van der Chijs/flickr/CC BY-ND 2.0

Tesla isn’t the only company advancing the connected car revolution. Lyft and GM have a partnership and will soon start rolling out a rental service that will eventually offer autonomous vehicles. Ford has a whole division working on autonomous vehicles, too. Uber has been rumored to have already put in the first order for 100,000 autonomous Mercedes.

Last week it was also reported that Google (also known as its parent company, Alphabet) is going to sell off a bunch of robotics companies it had been collecting in the past couple years (including Boston Dynamics) to Toyota, who has already hired away some of the robotic human talent from Google. (Yes, Boston Dynamics is the one that makes that weird “Big Dog” robot.)

In the past year, self-driving and autonomous cars have become a reality on our roads and soon will become much more commonplace as many of the top manufacturer and ride-sharing services are all racing towards a future of connected cars.

In preparing for this new mobile revolution, we should consider and start planning for the browser and app experiences people will expect from government services in those vehicles, as well as the mobile moments that people will have with their newfound extra time during their self-driven car commutes. This future will be here before we know it.