If you look back at the history of technology you find that what we know is not often what will be. What we forecast is likely though not often the result. Only one can guess how many trillions of messages of all types will be sent and shared by 2020. Forecasters say close to 3 trillion messages will be sent annually but if you look around the room and around the globe you only see the tip of the iceberg in user growth and use cases for messaging. When I grew up we had one rotary telephone and one TV. Now everyone has a TV in their hand and messaging types beyond your wildest imagination bombard you like hurricane. Sometimes SMS, chat apps, videos, email, and realtime meetings are all occurring at the same time. Looking forward even a little and beyond our traditional thinking, if digital transformation takes place in one industry can we not expect it to have a ripple or tsunami effect in many others. For example, take a look at Mahindar Comviva’s white paper on Digital Transformation and you will see an interesting view of the changing world of messaging. In another sector, IoT-internet of things devices will also be sending messages to me and everyone else on their chat lists to let people know what is going on. Are you beginning to see the compound or exponential growth in the world of messaging? Looking at this from another angle that of a provider or operator there has been the long “race to zero” where once high fees were charged for SMS, long distance and other services are now free. Now fee-based services are bundled together so the customer sees value in the overall benefit rather than any one feature or app. New fee-based features may arise though the business models may vary whether subscription or advertising derived revenues can level the playing field or even give rise to sustained revenues. Linkages with other business all aiming for the customer will be the new “middleman” in the mix. That is, companies who link with other companies to message you about things you need or want. Some are obvious like Amazon buying Whole Foods to bring all their other business to you whether you walk in the door, home delivery or even by drone in the future. At the same time there are tens of thousands of startups and others that are building unique and valuable solutions to solving specific problems with innovative technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning and wireless tech. I like to think that there is a new wave coming quickly of technology embedded literally in everything we buy including food, medicines, wearable and anything else that we do that will improve our lives in many ways we haven’t even thought about yet. For example, we really don’t know much about what we eat and its impact on our health. Yes, we know there are a lot of bad things but we don’t know conclusively if we eat one thing for twenty years that it will give us cancer or that it will help us live a lot longer. There are so many medical issues that via IoMT-internet of medical things that may be able to improve our lives, give us more energy and less live-threatening diseases later. I like the idea that my IoMT device will give me a warning or even a nudge when I eat something I shouldn’t or say that my weight-loss goals could be achieved if I did more of one kind of exercise than another. You can now see the world of messaging goes far beyond us chatting with each other which opens up even more possibilities than I have time to discuss today.
With over 25 years of sales, alliances and biz dev experience in telecom and IT, Evan Kirstel brings a unique perspective on opportunities in the Unified Communications & Collaboration landscape, including deep knowledge of social, mobile, and the voice/video/..