01 Jun Summertime and the living is anything but easy
Memorial Day marks the starting gate to summer. It is the harbinger of picnics and beach parties and family vacations. The fashion-conscious know that from now until Labor Day white shoes are “in.” The workday gets a little shorter. Kids are out of school. In short, it is the season to relax.
For most folks.
For me, the “white shoe season” is a mad dash to DEMOmobile. It’s 90 days of intensive searching, interviewing, culling, writing, consulting, and preparing. A DEMO Conference, I like to say, is a lot like going to the farmers market on a bright summer morning.
You go from stall to stall, looking for the freshest vegetables, the ripest fruit, the most interesting cheeses, fresh-caught fish, exotic new spices, fresh-baked breads. Each visit is a bit of a surprise, and it’s not until you get to the end of the shopping that you can even begin to know what sort of meal you’re able to make. It’s great fun and it’s a lot of work. And at this early part of the season, it’s hard to say what the market has in store for DEMOmobile and the 400 people who will feast on the meal come Sept. 8.
It’s possible to speculate on the areas of opportunity that are most ripe for the mobile and wireless market.
1. There will be tighter integration of mobile and enterprise- based communications and data management. For all intents and purposes, the so-called mobile enterprise focused on extending enterprise applications to field-based workers for data collection and providing capabilities to make folks more productive when they were on the road. Now, the distinction between mobile and office-based workers is gone. Workers are workers and enterprise processes need to suit the business need, not the whereabouts, of an employee. Communications and applications providers are re- thinking what it means to build software to accommodate a dynamic workforce, and are creating new applications that work seamlessly across devices. This is as opposed to the old approach, which was an attempt to make enterprise applications work on devices. Now, whether you are mobile or at your desk, you will have access to the appropriate tools and functions to do the work at hand.
2. Mobile data services will become more interesting. Forget news, sports, weather, and traffic. That’s information you can get “on the eights” on just about any AM talk radio station. Mobile data services have to become much more interesting and useful if we’re ever going to use those high-value “data minutes” the carriers are trying to sell. And more interesting they are, whether focused on the consumer or the business user of mobile phones. Of course, the most intriguing applications may be those that circumvent cellular carriers by tapping directly into wireless IP networks.
3. New interfaces will usher in new devices. Component technologies, from long-lasting batteries to intuitive input mechanisms, are changing the face of mobile devices and moving the market closer to consensus on what an integrated data and communications device will offer. Yes, I was long a proponent of special-purpose devices that met specific needs better than general-purpose devices that were forced to make tons of compromises. Component technology has evolved such that compromise is no longer necessary. Now, we’ll see that the bar has been raised on the “converged” communicator/data platform and differentiation will come in styling and special functions layered on top of that base.
These are just a few of the courses that are beginning to cook up for DEMOmobile 2004. Surely, there will be more. Of course, I’d love to hear what you’re guessing will happen in the mobile market. Better yet, I’d love to see what you’re planning on bringing to the party. Drop me a line at email@example.com and let me know what you can launch at DEMOmobile 2004.
There is one thing wireless LAN vendors hate: when users say they can’t tell the difference between the offerings on the market. For the past two years, start-ups and established players alike have been slugging it out in myriad venues to show the value proposition in choosing a particular wireless LAN architecture. By all accounts, Network World’s Wireless LAN Showdown at CeBit America last week was no different. Cisco, Extreme, Airespace all participated in a no-holds-barred debate. According to a report from my colleague Jeff Caruso, arguments ranged from the realities of “thin” access points to the benefits of “integrated” wireless networking. To read the full report, visit http://www.nwfusion.com/news/2004/0531wlancebitshowdown.html… Will the use of Radio Frequency Identification, or RFID, spark new legislation from states and the federal government? Privacy advocates are up in arms over the technology, a combination of computer chips and antennae, which could replace bar codes. Retailers are testing the technology to track products and for inventory. RFID foes worry the technology could be used to track people after they carry the RFID-tagged products out of a store. The IDG News Service reports that Utah and California are both considering legislation that would regulate the use of RFID . . . F5 is expanding its empire. The company snatched up Web application firewall vendor MagniFire Websystems for $29 million. F5 hopes to blend MagniFire’s security offerings with its own traffic management products.
The search is under way to find the 50 products that will launch at DEMOmobile 2004, September 8-10, 2004, in La Jolla, California.
DEMOmobile is a high-visibility launch platform that will set your company on the path to success. It’s the best venue for positioning new mobile and wireless products and establishing strategic relationships with the players who will lead you to success. The conference’s stringent selection process and excellent reputation serves as an endorsement for your product as it comes to market. DEMO events have helped companies like Palm, Handspring, IBM Pervasive Computing, Logitech, Mirra, Tapwave, Macromedia – even Microsoft – launch their products, create critical business relationships, and sell to thought-leading early adopters.
DEMOmobile 2003 demonstrators benefited from more than 162 million media impressions before, during, and long after the event.
Visit: http://www.idgexecforums.com/demonstrate/tour/index-demo2.html to learn more and complete an online application.
DEMOmobile 2004 September 8-10, 2004 Hilton La Jolla Torrey Pines, La Jolla, CA http://www.demomobile.com/M4DL
Chris Shipley is the executive producer of NetworkWorld’s DEMO Conferences, Editor of DEMOletter and a technology industry analyst for nearly 20 years. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Shipley, has covered the personal technology business since 1984 and is regarded as one of the top analysts covering the technology industry today. Shipley has worked as a writer and editor for variety of technology consumer magazines, including PC Week, PC Magazine, PC/Computing, and InfoWorld, US Magazine and Working Woman. She has written two books on communications and Internet technology, has won numerous awards for journalistic excellence, and was named the #1 newsletter editor by Marketing Computers for two years in a row. To subscribe to DEMOletter please visit: http://www.idgexecforums.com/demoletter/index.html.
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