The mobile phone will be a personal wellness device, controller of the home, wallet and personal identification device, according to a new report, and sooner than we think.
In the wake of the GSMA’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona last month, JWT released a report outlining 15 ways in which mobile will change people’s lives.
The concept of the phone as an ‘everything hub’ came through strongly in the report, with it taking on greater importance in every aspect of people’s lives. The marketing communications group predicts that ‘mobile will disrupt it all, and earlier than we could have expected’ as the pace at which technology shapes the world speeds up exponentially.
According to planning director at JWT, Alex Pallete, online ubiquity is the catalyst for a new understanding of what mobile means, and will see adoption of new mobile uses at a far greater rate than any technology to go before it.
“Many innovations that we may believe belong to the future are here already or even in our past,” Pallete says.
The ‘15 Ways Mobile Will Change Our Lives’ are taken from panels, keynotes and exhibitors from Mobile World Congress. Marketing has selected some key trends from the list to present below:
The smartphone as everything interface: The smartphone will become the key interface between connected devices and products and their users. Among other things, people will use the device to remotely control household appliances, interact with screens and automatically adjust car settings to their preferences. All kinds of things, from cars to refrigerators and entire homes, are getting connected and, as more manufacturers embed WiFi, SIM cards and other technologies into more products, expect anything and everything to link in to the internet. More devices will also become connected to the cloud as key players like Microsoft, Google and Apple expand their product lines across devices creating a more unified experiences across platforms.
Mobile identity: The mobile device will become a summation of who we are all in one place. It will be packed with personal information and images we’ve accumulated over time and serve as our mobile wallet and keychain, enabled by secure and seamless technologies such as bluetooth and NFC (near field communication).
Friction-free purchasing: The smartphone will become a passkey to the retail experience. The integration of NFC in handsets will enable fast and easy mobile payments. And as e-commerce and brick-and-mortar retailing integrate and overlap, shopping may entail simply snapping a photo or tapping a sensor, then collecting the order or having it immediately delivered.
Media multitasking: The mobile is becoming a complement to or distraction from most other types of media platforms and content. Consumers are hopping between screens (and the printed page), toying with their tablet or smartphone as they watch television, play video games, work on their computer and so on.
Access over ownership: With the proliferation of cloud-based services and Internet-enabled devices, consumers will shift from owning media to accessing it through subscriptions, however they want (via various connected devices) and wherever they want.
Hyper-personalization: Mobile devices will increasingly use the data they’re privy to – from purchases made to social interactions to location – to offer information tailored to the user. They will analyse past and current behaviour and activity to provide recommendations on where to go, what to do and what to buy.
The humanization of tech: As voice and gesture control become more common, our technology (mobile included) will adapt to us, rather than us adapting to it. Our digital experiences will become simpler and more user-friendly.
The mobile as a wellness device: Smartphones will help people lead healthier lives by providing information, recommendations and reminders based on data gathered through sensors embedded in users’ clothing (shoes, wristbands, etc.) or through other phone capabilities (motion detectors, cameras, etc.: Internet-enabled mobile devices are becoming important tools in broadening access to health care, diagnosing diseases and saving lives in crisis situations.
With the device becoming even more integral to our way of life, JWT offers the term ‘NoMoPhobia’ to refer to the fear being separated from your mobile device. With attachment to the device deepening as it evolves into an indispensable tool and becomes more closely linked to our identity, misplacing the mobile is expected to provoke real and even greater anxiety.