Trends 2016: Digital disruption led radical change

By Yatish Mehrotra

Organizations looking to unlock their full business potential must stay in sync with the upcoming technology trends and must master a wide range of digital technologies which are critical to connecting with customers (and employees) now.

We are in a period where digital technologies are reshaping relationships between customers and companies as well as blurring the boundaries between industry sectors. Organizations are reinventing not only their operating models, but in many cases their business models as well, just to survive.

However, research suggests that, digital disruption and the need to prepare for it, is still not receiving the direct attention at the Board level. Companies are either not acknowledging the risk of digital disruption, or have not addressed it sufficiently.

Digital disruption is not just a buzzword – it is here to stay, and to bring around radical change in the way companies think and operate.

In 2016, we see the trend of transitioning from traditional methods of managing the business to getting real-time analytics of every aspect of the business solidifying and becoming a part of mainstream business.

The era of mPayments: In India, there are over 1 crore mobile subscribers who use some or the other form of mobile money and payment application today.

Whether it is customer convenience, lower cost-per-transaction for urban customers or the safety and ease of transactions it offers to the un-banked and under-banked rural population in India – mPayments are only bound to grow.

Mobile payments technology is offering many small businesses and businessmen, as well as the underprivileged in our society, the opportunity to access basic financial services.

We believe consumers are looking for operator agnostic services – by creating products for all customers who can now have a choice of cashless dealings.

Public Wi-Fi is the traveler’s best companion:

The growing popularity of public Wi-Fi services – especially among millennials in India – is largely because mobile devices have become the number one information source for receiving and sharing everything from current affairs to celebrity gossip; and public spaces have become fundamental to this trend.

Visitors at shopping centers, railway stations, sports stadiums and other public spaces consider Wi-Fi access in the same way as air-conditioning or lighting; simply a given; and airline passengers are no exception.

Travelers have their own ‘Magic Hour’ that they use to check mails, access flight information, browse the web and send messages prior to boarding their flight.

According to SITA’s global research, air passengers are becoming increasingly reliant on social media throughout their journey.

  • Just over four in five passengers carry a smartphone and 76% of them use airline apps, 43% say it has made a definite improvement to their travel.
  • Provision of airport Wi-Fi represents a top three priority for passengers (after price comparison services and real time flight information).
  • 45% would use their connected device to purchase food and drinks or browse a virtual duty-free shop while waiting to board.
  • By 2016, airport status notifications and flight status updates will be provided on social media by 75% of airports, while 70% will offer customer relations.

Wearables makes Internet of Things real for consumers: As predicted by Gartner, the Internet of Things (IoT) will result in approximately 26 billion connected units by 2020.

The revenue generated from IoT products and services will cross $300 billion-mark, which provides a plethora of opportunities for organizations across sectors.

In order to lead this change, individuals and enterprises will have to fasten their hold on to the open standards for improving device monitoring and management, big data information gathering and analytics; and overall network communications.

Wearables are also growing in importance as mobile commerce gathers greater acceptability among consumers. Growing digitization, device automation, innovations in security and payment gateway services as well as growth in ecosystem partners will mean that new frictionless cashless payment methods will come into vogue – through the things we wear!

 Blending Mobile and Cloud: After growing at an exponential pace in 2015, cloud computing has become an integral part of the enterprise business strategy. Large global multinational firms are now looking to cloud to not only offer better front-end customer service but also to fully leverage advances in back-end manufacturing.

For CIOs to be sure they are getting the cost efficiency and resource optimization the cloud promises, requires them to deploy cloud analytics solutions.

In a connected device world where data resides in the cloud, mobiles are ideally placed to track the business outcomes most critical to them. Today, businesses no longer debate whether cloud and mobile analytics will work together – it’s about how can these two key trends be merged to create a seamless unified business management tool.

Smart connectivity means green connectivity: Going green is the latest trend being followed the world over. Products and devices, which are connected also will have the ability to sense, process, report, and take corrective actions.

Enterprises are currently involved in the process in reducing their carbon footprints in all verticals and introducing options such as green data centres for their customers.

Mr. Yatish Mehrotra, Head- Branded Retail, Tata Teleservices Ltd.







(The author, Yatish Mehrotra, is Regional Head Mobility-South, Tata Teleservices)

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