Smartphones have had a profound impact on the way we live. The rise of smartphones has led to everyone being constantly connected, entertained and informed. Gone are the days when you had to wait for your favourite weekly show to get entertained. You can just watch whatever you want, whenever you want. You don’t need to wait for the morning newspaper or the evening news to stay abreast of the things happening in the world, you can just read the notifications from the news app throughout the day. This profound change has also altered our consumption habits which in turn has affected industries that are driven by the way we consume things. Smartphones have disrupted several industries and forced them to evolve in order to survive. For example, the gaming industry is one of those that maybe before the others understood how important it was to develop a responsive mobile version that perfectly could be used and attract the players in terms of usability, thanks to the easy and intuitive navigation that allows you to quickly access the casino games.
Of course, the gaming industry is not the only one, e-commerce like Amazon, which allows you to make purchases finding all products you want with extreme simplicity. Or Fintech, banking sites such as Revolut, N26. N26, the first mobile-first bank. “Open your account online in just 8 minutes and manage it entirely via smartphone”. This example takes us beyond the now well-known home-banking: you can now open an account online quickly and the procedure ends with a video call with the operator to verify identity.
The number of FM Radio listeners has also increased exponentially because of the increased mobile phone penetration in rural markets. Oddly enough, sale of chewing gums off the shelves near the checkout counters at supermarkets has dropped considerably. It has been attributed to the fact that people are so preoccupied with their phones that they ignore the stacks of gum kept around the checkout counters. Digital point and shoot cameras have also experienced a decline in sales because of the advancements in smartphone camera technology. Even extensive discounts offered by camera giants haven’t really helped shore up the sales. The watch industry has also seen a decline in sales of entry-medium level watches as younger people have begun questioning the utility of a watch when they can just see the time on their smartphones. The cab industry has also witnessed a sea change with the rise of mobile ride aggregators such as Uber and Lyft. Gone are the days of standing on the side of the road and trying to hail a passing cab by waving furiously at it. People can just book the cab nearest to them and reach their destination hassle free. Let’s look at some mobile usability innovations in detail now.
Smartphones networks are constructed upon the basic layer of telephonic communication. Additional layers of efficiency in smartphone networks have resulted in communications becoming more polished than ever. The communication isn’t limited to voice anymore. Users can send various media through text messages, emails, cloud services, and other platforms. What’s more, even the science fiction realm of face to face video communication has also been conquered. Now, people sitting in Sydney, Australia can have a video call with a person sitting in Anchorage, Alaska at the touch of a button. Calling plans have also become cheaper and people are consuming digital information at a much higher rate than before. The mushrooming of various communication platforms has changed how people do business. Take the examples of an online casino. Gone are the days when you need to visit an actual casino for a fun night of gambling or contact your bookie to place bets on your favourite sports events. You can just log in to the website of any popular online casino and do it from the comfort of your home.
Over the years, calling plans have become cheaper than ten years ago. Increased internet speeds lead to increased productivity as well.
Smartphones give us the freedom to try doing many things in many places. The amount of stuff we can learn at the drop of a hat is incredible. As long as you’ve got reception, you can access a range of media and services using a device which literally fits in your pocket (and doesn’t really burn a hole in it when you buy one). With smartphones, you can do an incredible number of things like checking your email, paying your taxes, shopping, reading the news, following the stock market, reading some interesting blogs, and checking important financial information from any location.
You can also play a workout video using YouTube or an app and do your day’s workout using it. Smartphones can make you fitter and healthier, inside your house.
Personal organization used to be an arduous and boring task at one point of time. Smartphones have made it a lot easier. With the help of smartphones, people can organize everything quite neatly and easily. Whether you’re searching for a specific email or an obscure memo from months ago, or would like to record the last time you spoke to a client, the power of smartphones helps you browse and retrieve your personal info with ease.
Smartphones also perform the role of personal assistants. They allow users to set up reminders about upcoming meetings, bills, and deadlines. You can also install applications that arrange, file, and organize files for you.
If you take a lot of photos to chronicle your life’s events, you can organize them and sort them out as per date using certain apps as well. You can even upload your photos in the cloud and never worry about losing out on precious memories if something happens to your device.
Novel Payment Tools
Gone are the days when you could only make payments using cash/cheques/credit cards. There are numerous payment apps that allow you to pay with a touch/swipe. Payment apps such as Google Pay are powered by government backed payment systems such as India’s Unified Payment Interface (UPI). This has led to a drastic change in which business transactions are carried out in India. Especially in tech savvy cities like Bangalore, even street side fruit vendors are accepting payments through the UPI system. People just need to scan a QR code and they can make a payment directly from their account into the vendor’s account.
India Stack is a government multi-layered project that facilitates presence less, paperless, cashless, and consentless financial system. The user interface for this system will be on mobile phones.
Building and maintaining business relationships is a key component in today’s fast-paced world. Networking has also changed drastically with the rise in popularity of Facebook and LinkedIn, with the latter especially focussing on business networking.
Smartphones have improved the access to these platforms drastically and have broadened our social circles massively. Access to information about acquaintances and clients on-the-go creates a major difference in business interactions.
Take this example, if you’re going to a business meeting with someone you’ve only met once, you could go to their Facebook or LinkedIn page to learn more about them and work on developing conversation points that will help you create a better relationship in the future.
Before the rise of smartphones, people used to have Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs) for completing tasks on the go. However, these expensive devices were beyond the reach of most people and they were restricted to the members of the upper class and business. Today, most people and companies jumped from PDAs to smartphones and they became obsolete as people started using smartphones for all those tasks.
Increased Online Presence
As smartphones have become more popular, more people have started using them as the primary means to access the internet. This number is only going to increase with time as devices are becoming mobile and the internet is getting cheaper.
Businesses are focusing on creating mobile friendly websites and platforms to make sure their brand looks good online. There is no point making a beautiful desktop website when 60% of the visitors will access it through their phones only. The increase in the number of online users As the number of online users increases, brands must channel funds to advertising and marketing techniques.
Business Reputation Protection
Smartphones have given immense power to the people and businesses worldwide. Customers also hold a lot of power now. One unfavourable online review can result in the company’s reputation suffering massively.
Businesses have got to be more careful with how they represent themselves online. Online brand reputation matters a lot today.