Smartphones are selling better than computers but what does it mean if you're a business?
Lenovo, one of the largest producers of consumer electronic has published sales figures and they give us something to think about. Lenovo is now selling more smartphones than personal computers. In the last year’s last quarter Lenovo has shipped 15.8m smartphones compared to 14.5m personal computers. This is a staggering 1.3m difference over only three months!
Smartphones are becoming not just increasingly popular, they are in fact REPLACING other modes of online communication such as personal computers, laptops and even tablets. Not long ago Apple has published 2015 sales report according to which iPads sales and declining in favour of iPhones. Why is that you may ask?
Well, the thing is that traditional computer and laptop technology has hit a bit of a glass ceiling, whereas smartphones are getting progressively better every single year. Each new flagship phone comes with more power, better battery life, higher spec camera, more impressive screen and, more often then not, completely new, surprising features. Just to name a few of those: near field communication enabling contactless payments, fingerprint scanners for better security, 3D force touch for more engaging experiences with touch interfaces. These are just some examples from the last 1-2 years and there is more to come in the near future. Just to give you an idea, Google is working on affordable, modular smartphone with easily upgradable parts. Now if you want a better spec camera, you have to replace the entire smartphone. Google wants to change that by making parts of smartphone replaceable. Better camera? Check. More battery life? Done. Google’s plan is to reach as many as 6 billion people with it’s new affordable phone. That’s not far from entire world’s population! Nowadays more people are buying smartphones than ever, and the sales figures encourage manufactures to invest into research and development and come up with interesting innovations. Those, in turn, drive the sales up more and so the circle continues.
The fact of the matter is that smartphones are becoming so versatile, they make personal computers pretty much obsolete. Already, almost everything a person would use a computer for, smartphone can do too, and it can do it on the go! Browsing Internet, online shopping, booking flights and hotels, looking up things to do, emailing, navigating, watching videos or listening to music. The list goes on and on. Thanks to smartphones we can do all our online activities anywhere and anytime, whether it’s in the cafeteria during morning coffee or while commuting on a train, it doesn’t matter where we are. Now we always have quick and convenient access to the Internet in our pockets.
If you think about it, a decade ago smartphones were a no more than a novelty. A funky looking gadgets to show off to your friends. However, the modern world has noticed smartphone’s potential very quickly indeed. Before that, our online habits and activities revolved around using a desktop computer or a laptop. We were limited to physical space and time in which we could “go on the internet”, whether it was at home, work or school etc. Unless you dragged your laptop everywhere with you (and providing there was WiFi access!), you had to wait to check and do things online. Now it’s a whole different story. Shopping, organising, planning, travelling, communicating and sharing is much more an impulse thing. A thought comes to your head about next year’s holiday and you have to ability to share that thought, then plan, organise and execute it within moments. Some industries are already seeing what is happening and are joining in. The social media was probably the fastest sector to adopt to this new situation. Then others followed such as media and retail. The latest to join is financial sector with PayPal leading the change on how we manage money.
The bottom line here is the quicker any business will realise what is happening, the better for them. To be part of this digital revolution is to be where it matters. Where it counts. Where the customers are.