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Apr 29

What’s Next in Internet Technology

The rate of technological advancement remains high, and each time it seems as though a particular type of device is at its peak something new comes out to make everyone reevaluate how functions such as sales, marketing, and everyday life must operate. In the past few years, attention has remained on the internet due to the importance of the virtual space to sales and modern companies.

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Mobile Computing Set to Dominate

The gradual switch of internet users from using desktop computers to using tablets, laptops, and smart phones now races at an incredible pace with recent reports suggesting that sales of personal computers tumbled more in the first part of 2013 than was ever seen since the firm providing such statistics started tracking computer sales in the mid-nineties.

On the radar for a few years now, high speed mobile internet computing seems poised to overtake desktop computing within the decade as bandwidth increases and highly capable devices continue to flood the market. Some suggest that the decline in sales of PCs relates to the global recession since companies and individuals aren’t replacing their computers so often with the average ownership time of a PC reaching five years.

With sales of smart phones continuing to rise and traditional methods of computing on a decline, it is only a matter of time before the average citizen spends more time on the internet through their phone than through their desktop PC.

Print Media Goes Digital

For many years, print magazines and newspapers saw declining revenues from paper delivery due to the migration of readers to the internet, and such companies languished for years as interest in paper-based reading plummeted. Some print media sources seem poised to make the jump fully from paper delivery to the internet with the New York Times recently offering information on a new subscription program for online visitors.

The high profile NYC based newspaper suggests that new plans would showcase a variety of pricing tiers, with different levels of premium content available to online subscribers. An employee for the company described such subscription efforts as a type of sales that would mirror the Netflix pricing model.

The low-priced plans that Netflix offered customers showcased a willingness for customers to pay for streaming and the New York Times hopes to capitalize on this need for digital content. Should the move toward digital subscriptions prove fruitful for the paper, other publications may follow and the total migration of paper newspapers to digitally based information-sharing.

The Internet Gets Personal

Anonymity on the internet recedes each year due to the popularity of websites and smart phone applications that require a user’s location for proper operation, and the increase in location targeting for web surfers will allow companies to strike up a more personal relationship with their customers.

A recent study by the Digital Advertising Alliance suggests web surfers prefer targeted advertisements and that content available on an advertising-supported model, such as the commercials that air before a standard YouTube feed, offer the greatest satisfaction for web surfers.

The value of hyper-local advertising should increase substantially as internet users make the jump to using their smart phones as a primary communication device since a smart phone offers geographic data on a person’s location. Brick and mortar companies increasingly rely upon the marketing bump that an internet presence offers and local, targeted advertisements boost visibility for those companies.

The support of advertising-based content represents an interesting shift in consumer sentiment when advertisements on websites used to be a source of complaints. With the quality and value of digital content improving each year, consumers and internet denizens seem much more likely to pay thirty seconds of their life to watch a commercial so that they might get some free content.