Mobile phones are no longer just a means of calling another person. In several countries, mobile devices are used to pay for merchandise, receive time sensitive information and send e-mail messages. Additionally, corporations use mobile phones to access critical business information and send tasks to field workers, regardless of time or location.
In recent years, several global mega-trends have started to emerge, creating exciting business opportunities and concepts. Widespread usage of credit cards, the phenomenal explosion of the internet and rising mobile phone penetration have paved the way for advanced mobile applications that enable both consumers and corporations to access personalized services. Therefore, mobile devices are becoming an important part of the lives of ordinary people. Using a mobile phone, they can buy a soft drink when passing a vending machine, receive e-mails immediately after they are sent, order a taxi without knowing their current location and get notified if they forgot to pay the electricity bill. Ubiquity, intimacy, time sensitivity and location awareness are key concepts that make mobile business so different from ‘traditional’ e-commerce.
Business professionals can no longer wait until colleagues have time to replicate their e-mails. Instead, for urgent matters, they send an instant message or push e-mail.Travellers can use location-based hotel finders to find their way in strange cities. Consumers subscribe to instant stock quote services, pushed into their mobile phones, to keep up with the stock market. Ordinary people install credit and payment cards into their mobile phones to be able to buy online, regardless of their location.Without doubt, the mobile revolution offers interesting business opportunities to everybody. At the same time, it transforms existing business structures and poses threats to traditional players, especially those in the fields of telecommunications and finance.