Why mobile makes all the difference

Posted on 04/11/2011


old couple, each on their phones

I’m sceptical of anyone who tries to predict the future, including an international investment bank. Morgan Stanley claimed last year that by 2013 more than half of online traffic would be from mobile devices. What I disagree with most is the viewpoint that mobile is the future. Mobile is the present, not the future.

So far this year 11.3% more smartphones were sold than in 2010. Mobile traffic now accounts for 12.59% of UK web traffic, and continued to increase its share of internet traffic. Google has pursued a “mobile first” policy for almost a year. If being mobile implies flexibility and dynamism then why aren’t companies making more of an issue of it?

How we engage with certain services on mobile devices is deciding our relationship with that company. Or put another way: companies and their products are winning or losing by the quality of their mobile offering.

The case in point: Gmail vs Yahoo. I’ve had a yahoo email address since the year dot (when BT’s Talk 21 merged with Yahoo). My first and second email addresses were with Yahoo making me a customer for over 12 years. It has all my friends email addresses in and years worth of emails.

And yet I’d switch tomorrow if i had the time. Even pre smartphone, Gmail has had better apps, been easier to access and less fidley. The company just seems to understand mobile better than Yahoo and because of that i use their app more.

Email isn’t even a paid for service. If the people you rely on online could even conceivably need you on their phones then it is most definitely time to start thinking mobile.