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Some Reflections on My Experience at Mobile World Congress

March 4, 2013 at 2:04 pm PST

It seems like Mobile World Congress in Barcelona continues to grow year over year, suggesting the appetite for mobile services and devices will continue to explode over the coming years. The range of exhibitors is overwhelming covering a range of technology products and services. In addition to the usual suspects of handset manufacturers, mobile app vendors, and mobile network platform vendors, I noticed a strong undercurrent of enterprise/business-class service offerings, as if mobile services are starting to break away from the consumer-centric roots of the industry and driving towards the business of delivering services that enterprises would care about. Mobile device management vendors were certainly at the forefront of this trend with the range of device management options growing exponentially it would seem.

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The Customer Experience: The New Gold Rush (Part 2)

In Part 1, I explained that both sides of the customer experience equation—what I am led to expect, and what I perceive I received—are both heavily influenced by today’s hyperconnected world. Let me recap briefly before I explain how we can approach customer experience in this new world.

Today, I can easily compare products across the globe—and get any number of reviews on your products versus any others. Perhaps even more influential are the social media networks, where those I listen to most—my friends—can quickly influence me and make or break your product. Read More »

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Expanding Universe of Mobile Video Opens a World of Opportunities

Mobile video is exploding at a rate unimagined only a few short years ago. Whereas the quick YouTube clip had been a satisfying enough diversion, consumers armed with next-generation devices now demand the latest bandwidth-busting, 2-gigabyte Hollywood opus. The end user wants it on his iPad, and he wants it now.

For the industry at large, this creates no shortage of challenges. According to the Cisco Visual Networking Index, by 2016, 71 percent of global mobile data traffic will be video, placing a heavy burden on the network. But along this next frontier of mobile video there are also unprecedented and exciting opportunities.

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Tablets Welcomed. Can Your Wireless Network Support the User Experience Expected of These Sleek Devices?

Ok, so maybe you are starting to give in to the idea that, employees bringing personally owned tablets at work, is indeed not a fad and you have to deal with it. You have decided on a BYOD strategy that protects company and network resources, while (mostly?) satisfying user appetite for connectivity anywhere from any device.

Great! Now. Is your 802.11n wireless network capable of delivering the user experience that is associated with these new sleek gadgets?

If you thought your network is “good enough”, then think again. This client wave is about to disrupt everything in multiple ways.

  • First, more devices on the network translate to significantly higher demands for bandwidth. In many cases bandwidth requirements can grow exponentially because the ratio of user to devices is no longer 1:1 but 1:2 and often 1:3. We therefore expect to see network utilization significantly rise over time.
  • Second, tablet form factor now allows users to truly be mobile. Unlike laptops, users can now walk/move and be productive at the same time. This new type of behavior will increase the number of clients roaming between access points.
  • Finally, it has been observed that tablets are primarily used for content consumption (as opposed to creation), and video is one of the predominant types of content being consumed, which further complicates bandwidth issues, but also creates new challenges.

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Five Ways To Start Using Big Data

Just when we feel we are drowning in information, along comes Big Data to save the day. Big Data refers to a dataset so large it is beyond the capability of a typical database to manage and make use of the information. But a set of advances in hardware and software now allows us to rapidly capture, organize, and make sense of vast oceans of data, enabling us to apply the results to make better business decisions.

Big Data can give us a strategic advantage. For example, investors could see global trends in trading across sectors in near-real time; they could respond much earlier to a downturn in prices in a given sector, avoiding the steep losses incurred by taking later action.

Big Data can also create a richer experience for customers. Bloomberg.com gathers more than 100 data points from every page an individual reader views, processing the data with 15 algorithms to personalize recommendations. Algorithms that understand natural language and rich media and can reason make Big Data technology even more useful in decision making. Novel visualization paradigms, 3D, and gesture interfaces make Big Data understandable and accessible to everyone.

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