Thursday, April 12, 2007

is m-commerce finally ready?

M-commerce; is it something you're thinking about? If not... it might be time to look more seriously into it. An article on along with some other articles about how some big entities are getting into the mobile banking/payment game started me thinking about this subject again.

There are a lot of things starting to finally converge that make this something to pay attention to. Some of those include:
  • better displays on the newer mobile devices
  • faster data services provided by the mobile providers
  • the capability to via hosted services, build a mobile version of your online retail store with a small investment in time and effort.
  • the generation that has been text messaging like crazy for 3 years or more... is either about to graduate from college or is out... and is now starting to have money to spend.
  • the ability to behaviorally target the user with context relative information real-time (ads, prices, etc. based on your physical location)
I think that the Apple iPhone, the wifi Zune and the plethora of devices like it will be driving people even further to this mode of shopping sooner rather than later.

I have to admit though that my own use of my Treo 650 as a mobile device has been... well... underwhelming at times. I chalk this up to the capabilities of the services that I've tried to use rather than the capabilities of the device.

In general though, if you don't have a mobile store within the next 8-12 months... and you're looking for a leg up on your competition, it might be time to check out a service like mPoria to see if you can design an experience that is very relevant to your customer. The convenience of the mobile store, combined with the improvements in the user experience and the adaptation of the mobile device as an everyday necessity might just be pushing mobile commerce to a tipping point explosion.

Would love to hear your thoughts... feel free to meebome on the right or comment.

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