The Internet of Everything will make the smartphone obsolete

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6 March 2014 – The Internet of Everything – global connectivity of digital devices and all things electronic – is set to offer consumers a mobile world of personalisation and convenience, but is likely to make the smartphone obsolete.

This is the key prediction from a futures study undertaken by ZenithOptimedia and Performics. Published at the beginning of the Mobile World Congress and following on from ZenithOptimedia’s ‘2038’ futures study, The Mobile of Everything: Why Hyper-Connectivity Means the End of the Smartphone says that the new era of the internet will be profoundly mobile. However, it predicts that the term ‘mobile’ will eventually cease to refer to a handset and instead will be used to describe a world where a myriad of computers of all types and sizes are embedded into everything around us.

ZenithOptimedia and Performics argue that Internet of Everything, could be better termed as the Mobile of Everything, as our focus will shift to the consumer who will be able to connect online wherever they through objects and electronic hardware around us and through devices that are wearable, attached to our clothing and even embedded under or skin.

As we approach the era of the Mobile of Everything, the study says that the smartphone will reach the peak of its importance and global adoption. ZenithOptimedia and Performics have identified five key developments that will drive the growth of the smartphone in the coming years, as we get ever closer to hyper-connectivity.

First, we now expect more and more from our smartphones as they become intuitive and are increasingly connecting with devices around us. Second, our smartphones are becoming ‘intelligent’ devices able to detect changes in our moods and behaviours though biometric technology. Third, the smartphone will continue to become the key device through which we control and organise our lives. Many new apps now enable the smartphone to be the single device that we use to manage digital functionality throughout the home.

Fourth, we are increasingly using smartphones to facilitate our purchases and this only set to increase. And, fifth through advances in automotive technology, cars are becoming mobile devices in their own right, providing us with a range of mobile computing functionality as we drive.

However, The Mobile of Everything: Why Hyper-Connectivity Means the End of the Smartphone goes on to argue that once we reach hyper-connectivity, and come to enjoy a data-fuelled world, powered by millions of sensors and screens embedded into surfaces around, the smartphone as we know it, will cease to have a purpose. ZenithOptimedia and Performics believe that at this point we will see a shift for smartphones to ‘smartcities’. Our cities of the future are set to embrace wireless sensor networks that will deliver data to everybody and enable us to control our lives in a way that is truly mobile. In the era of the Mobile of Everything, the focus will be on consumers and the content that is curated and customised for them. In this mobile, consumer-centric world, the media and marketing industries will inevitably move away from the concept of ‘media channels’.

Fred Joseph, CEO EMEA at Performics and Global Mobile Lead at ZenithOptimedia said: “There is no doubt that the smartphone will become more sophisticated and central to the lives of a greater proportion of the world’s population over the coming years. However, we believe that as technology develops, enabling a world of hyper-connectivity, fuelled by data and powered by sensors, the smartphone as we know it will become obsolete. This new world will offer many exciting consumer engagement opportunities for brands that are prepared to invest in partnerships, technology solutions and importantly ‘owned content’.”

About ZenithOptimedia
ZenithOptimedia – www.zenithoptimedia.com – is a leading global media services network with 250 offices in 74 countries. We are part of Publicis Groupe, the world’s third largest communications group, and the world’s second largest media counsel and buying group. As the first agency to apply a rigorous and objective approach to improving the effectiveness of marketing spend, ZenithOptimedia delivers to clients the best possible return on their communications investment. This philosophy is supported by a unique approach to strategy development and implementation across the full spectrum of paid, owned and earned contact points – the Live ROI planning process. The ZenithOptimedia Group of companies equips our clients with a full range of integrated skills across communications planning, value optimisation, performance media and content creation. Our key clients include Armani Group, ASUS, Aviva, BBC Worldwide, Bacardi-Martini, Electrolux, General Mills, Lactalis, LVMH, Nestlé, News Corporation, L’Oréal, Oracle, Puma, Qantas, Reckitt Benckiser, Richemont Group, Royal Bank of Scotland, Sanofi, SCA, Telefónica O2, Toyota/Lexus, Verizon and Whirlpool.

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