The UK is a nation of smartphone addicts. Deloitte's sixth annual Mobile Consumer Survey reveals that four out of five adults now own a smartphone, with one in three admitting to checking their phone in the middle of the night.
When the smartphone came out, it completely changed the game for digital technology and communications. Suddenly, users no longer needed separate devices for music, the internet, phone calls, photos, GPS, etc. Instead, they had access to all of it in one hand with the push of a button - and the world never looked back.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) has finally emerged from the shadowy realm of university labs and science fiction to splash down right in the heart of mainstream society. This seemingly rapid ascent has been bolstered by an unlikely (even pedestrian) bedfellow: online shopping.
They say every once in a while, there comes along a new technology that disrupts the entire industry and changes the way we see things. Almost a decade after its arrival, digital technology has transformed the retail industry in how customers purchase, evaluate, receive, return, or use products. We hear stories such as ‘Shoppers fleeing physical stores’, ‘Great mall exodus’ and so on. Indeed, Marc Andreessen’s prediction that e-commerce will overtake retail businesses seems to become truer every day.
Each month, more than one billion people use Facebook Messenger to call, video chat, or text with friends. But increasingly, Messenger is emerging as a viable platform for direct customer service and engagement.
Just because a web page is popular doesn’t mean that it’s useful. In fact, it could be getting in the way of a more useful page.
“We’ve recently decided to remove Basic rights at work, the most visited advice page on our website,” Hannah Horton from the UK’s Citizen Advice recently wrote. “It gets 70,000 visits a month and is in the top results for lots of queries about work problems on Google.”
Chances are that most people turn to a mobile app on their smartphone every morning while starting their day, even before enjoying that first cup of coffee. Whether they are checking the weather, logging in their fitness routine, or adding the cost of their Starbucks latte to their weekly budget, it is clear that ‘mobile moments’ spent on apps have become an integral part of our daily routine.
Ah, the future…
I marvel at how “the future” occupies so much of our focus, and yet it always looms just out of reach, never really “here” and always “out there.” It’s never quite real, the future; at least, not real like the present is perpetually real. In fact, the present is the only real thing we consistently have.
The Average Internet User Has Changed
The face of the average internet user is changing every day, with more millennials - most of whom are “digital natives,” or people that grew up using and understanding digital technology - online than practically any other demographic. Think about it: when the internet first exploded, its users were learning how to use it for the very first time. It was a completely new way of operating and, essentially, a new language for everyone involved.
As both a professor and chief scientist at AnswerDash, I spend time around two groups of people that couldn’t be more different:
- Enterprise marketing, sales, and customer experience executives
- Nineteen year-old college students
The first group loses sleep over rising costs, whereas the second just loses sleep.