Friday, 18 November 2011

What I've been reading this week

Business model evolution

Apple’s new patent, if implemented in hardware, represents another nail in the coffin of mobile operators slightly pathetic attempts to monopolise the nascent NFC market. NFC in phones is a neat technology, but frankly offers limited additional customer benefit above conventional payment and access technologies. If payment in particular is such a draw, then the industry should ask itself how much consumers are willing to pay for chip and pin. The answer, in case you’re wondering, is “zero”. More sensible to make this a very minor part of the phone architecture.

And just to ram home the point, news of this collaboration between Intel and Mastercard demonstrates how likely it is that the secure functions of NFC terminals will lie off the SIM card.

New technology

Great that the UK has finally got an LTE network, however it’s real impact is likely to be small, particularly in reducing congestion around the Olympic Games sites. So few LTE devices are in service that only a few roamers from Europe and business users crazy enough to do data roaming with dongles will actually benefit. Still, from little acorns...

If the rumours are true and Apple are going to release a TV next year, then I hope it works as well as this. Amazing what can be done with cheap hardware and a bit of ingenuity.

The graphics capability of a modern PC is quite astounding. What’s more incredible is that this level of quality will be the mainstream within 2 years. Imagine that on your 65” Apple TV.

Not really a surprise that Nokia are seeking to complement their smart phone/ music store product set with a tablet offer...

...Nor that Amazon are going to complement their tablet product with a smart phone. My prediction is that neither vendor will sell more than 1Mn units of their new product in 2012.

Digital media

Mobile marketing is set for a big year in 2012 and consolidation will be a feature of that success. My sources in London agencies tell me that they’re seeing triple digit YoY growth in the developed markets as consumers become more used to receiving and interacting with mobile ads.

If capital availability and governmental incentives remain good for digital business, then the continued high engagement UK citizens have with the Internet can be translated into an escape route from our economic woes. Here’s hoping.

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