Mobility Matters: Are B2B Software Developers Ready?
Over the last several weeks, I have been doing a fair bit of traveling. I found myself in the unfortunate situation of not having the use of my laptop for a few days while traveling internationally. Fortunately, I was traveling with a few key gadgets: my iPad, a cool iPad keyboard from Zagg, and my cell phone. I had almost everything I needed to get my job done and was able to get by well enough for the remainder of my trip. Although I am an avid iPad user both for business and personal use, this experience reaffirmed just how close we are in many ways to really being able to decouple ourselves from the traditional PC for many of the office- based work functions that most of us manage on a daily basis.
This experience reminded of Mary Meeker’s annual report on Internet Trends which offers a good reminder, useful stats, and insights to software publishers and device manufacturers about the changes which are influencing the way people get things done.
The mobile market is completely changing the way people interface with software, devices, and the internet. This is no surprise, but is also more than a future prediction. The future is here, and customers I work with that are in the B2B space are building strategies for getting on board. One interesting stat from Pew Research Center indicates that nearly one third of all US adults own either a tablet or e-reader, which grew from 2 percent only 3 years ago.
Second, and more importantly, these dramatic changes being driven by mobile devices, cloud-based service offerings, a desire for an improved user experience which started in the consumer space, are now entering the B2B space. “All are leading to’” as Mary Meeker calls it, a “re-imagination of nearly everything.” According to Meeker, some businesses which have been in existence in many cases essentially unchanged for several centuries are being re-imagined and reinvented. For example, earlier this year, Encyclopedia Britannica stopped their print business after 244 years of publication.
This has got to make software developers wonder how ready they really are to face the inevitable trend towards mobile. Are your customers already re-imagining how they would prefer to solve the same problems your software or device solves today? And what impact will this have on the future of your business?
You can rest assured that this is a focus for me and our team of product managers and engineers when it comes to how our customers’ requirements for monetizing their solutions are changing and will continue to change as a result of the changes we are experiencing in the mobile market.
How has the growing mobile market changed your software’s monetization strategy?