More and more families are settling in to a typical night at home…and not turning on the television set. Instead, increasing numbers are flipping open their laptops or retiring to the "computer room" for some Twitter or Facebook time.
For others, the television might be involved, but it is being used to cruise the Internet to check out news, a YouTube video they heard about at work or access personal content from a central home drive/media center to check out photos/videos or peruse a music collection. Still others will spend endless hours sending and receiving text messages.
This behavior is not atypical anymore, no matter what part of the world you live in.
"The use of technology as a medium for work and play is changing consumer behavior today," began Phillip Crenshaw, a long time consumer research analyst. "And it’s not just changing what they do for a short part of the day. It’s changing what they are doing all day."
As consumers continue to evolve from the stage where they were connected for a short part of the day to being connected all day, it’s important to note that it is affecting more than just their mobile/Internet usage habits.
"It is affecting everything they do, the way they are living their lives," Crenshaw added. "They are exposed to so much more of the world and are so much more keenly aware of exactly what they want. They can now express themselves to this broad audience without leaving their comfort zone."
As we move into the 4G world, there are several important announcements being made and even more important ramifications to consider.
In early 2010, TeliaSonera and Ericsson will unveil the first commercial Long Term Evolution (LTE) network in Stockholm, Sweden, one of the 20 countries where the company has a communications presence. This 4G mobile broadband network will revolutionize the way people share information via their mobile networks by focusing solely on the exchange of data.
What is this all about, you may ask? This LTE network would create full IP-based mobile communications and full-4G wireless. It will surely take some time for the technology to fully develop and perform nationwide. For now, it is being tested in Boston and Seattle.
All this clamoring over 4G is due to the fact that the newer functions that are (constantly) being introduced to the mobile world are simply demanding a more powerful and faster platform – similar to the move from DSL to cable on the Web.
Within the imaging world this means easier sharing capability of images and video and much-faster uploads to the Web for same. In other words, this "social picturing" phenomenon isn’t going away – it’s only going to get more ubiquitous.
"I think the demand is moving faster than what the telecommunications industry can supply right now," Crenshaw added. Doesn’t that sound familiar?
Consumers are absolutely goofy over this stuff now and their wireless/mobile/connected experience is actually going to improve. Really?
"There will eventually be no bandwidth strain and it will open up an even-broader world for these devices and their users," Crenshaw explained. "The mobile revolution is just getting started."