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Going Mobile

The latest viral iteration of information technology is taking shape across the world—people are going mobile. Mobile is the new way of computing, condensing, connecting, and doing business. People are keeping their mobile devices near and dear, and the trend for increased use is growing at an accelerated pace. Phone calls, texts, browsing, social media, and mobile commerce all come into play through the constant use of mobile technology.

According to the Mobile Marketing Association, a global trade association established to lead the growth of mobile marketing and its associated technologies, “As technology ignites a new world of interconnectivity, mobile converts every object into a medium and every place into a message. Each engagement is an opportunity; each connection is a potential customer; each sale is a gateway to loyalty.”

Going mobile is becoming the way of the world. Just as people are disconnecting because busy schedules give us less time for face-to-face in-person meetings, smartphones and tablets have taken over and touch-screen technology brings interaction closer—to our fingertips, no longer kept at arms length on a desktop. So while we are ever becoming less personal, we are getting closer.

Whether iOS, Android, BlackBerry, or Windows, mobile technology is ramping up to include not only smartphones and tablets, but now wearable devices as well—watches and glasses are the next big thing, and while the screens may be getting smaller, the audience is growing larger.

Digital business analytics giant comScore reports that at the end of the second quarter, mobile commerce was up 24 percent over a year ago, and predicts continued and accelerated growth. Interestingly, spending per user was less on smartphones than tablets, but because so many more people have smartphones than tablets, smartphones accounted for 63 percent of mobile commerce dollars, according to comScore.

I’ve tepidly tried mobile commerce—paid for coffee with an app, texted back an ok to pay my mobile phone bill, and instantly ordered books on my tablet. Mobile commerce is quick and easy, relatively painless once all the accounts and passwords are set up. I can’t wait until time for holiday shopping, and though I won’t be able to wait until Christmas Eve this year, I will be able to spend more money faster on my smartphone and tablet and take care of my list in record time. Going mobile is rapid and quickly becoming a ritual.

Just like our Top 49ers are a ritual at Alaska Business Monthly. This year is no exception, from our annual awards luncheon where we name the Top 49 businesses owned and operated by Alaskans to the pages of the magazine where we’ve devoted a large share of the October issue to these Blockbusters of Business. You might need to pop some popcorn and grab a beverage to get through this month’s issue. The team at Alaska Business Monthly has put together another really great issue. Enjoy!

—Susan Harrington, Managing Editor

This first appeared in the October 2013 print edition of Alaska Business Monthly magazine.

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