There's No Turning Back
By Terence Ronson Managing Director, Pertlink Ltd. | January 12, 2014
Walk down almost any street, enter into any shopping mall, take a form of public transportation, go to various places of work and even be in some places of worship, in fact virtually anywhere in the civilized world where there are people, and the one thing that you'll find in common and very evident, is the fact that a great many of them are interacting with some form of mobile device.
During the last decade, one could easily say that the human race has evolved more than any previous time that came before, and much of this can be the attributed to mobile devices. Today, these are most likely in the form of a Phone, a Tablet or some other untethered device such as a Smart Watch or interactive Glasses.
Single handedly kick starting this entire process was the launch on June 29, 2007 of the iPhone, where up until that moment in time we really didn't understand the true value of mobility, and the various benefits it could bring. We'd played around with a few toys, but nothing was as serious and credible as the iPhone. Since that day (the new new industrial revolution), we could be untethered, and yet fully connected. Suddenly we became empowered to carry on our daily lives – both professional and personal, in evolving ways that were both fun and yet scary. And the line between work and play quickly changed from being solid, to one composed of very fine dots, and in some cases, eroded all together.
There is no turning back – there is no U-turn – it's a 1-way road. We've had a taste of what mobility can offer, and we like it. In fact, mobility has spawned a completely new ecosystem that encompasses accessories and apps, and let's not loose sight of our insatiable appetite for bandwidth – something that has become a key ingredient of nightmares for [Hotel] IT personnel.
Then there is the social and psychological impact on us humans. We've become so used to using these devices that in some cases, people have withdrawal symptoms if they're not touching one for a short while – it's addictive and drug like. A recent survey conducted by TripAdvisor (published by Samantha Shankman, SKIFT - NOV 18, 2013) tells us that eighty-five percent of American travelers use a smartphone on vacation and that sixty-one percent, of American travelers are using their mobile devices to access and share social media. What's driving the social media obsession? It's a fear of missing out on what's going on at home and the opportunity to make others jealous of vacation time.
These gadgets have become our new BFF, our new sleeping partner, and for some folks, a new appendage to the human body – and most definitely a fashion statement plus one of demonstrating financial standing as some folks change them every few months.