Wow – so in the past couple of weeks, we’ve seen two colossal shifts in the mobile world. First, HP announced its plans to shut down the mobile hardware side of the business, namely the TouchPad tablet and smartphones, in order to focus more of its attention on the software side. Second, the saving grace of Apple, Steve Jobs, has stepped down as CEO which saw almost $20 billion instantly wiped from Apple’s share price amidst the shock reaction.
With this in mind there is one clear conclusion – things change.
HP webOS, an operating system initially developed by Palm, was well loved by many. Things were looking up for webOS as it was seemingly resurrected by HP’s tablet success. Now, the rug has been pulled from under its feet as the HP tablet strategy has disappeared, which has left webOS’s fate very much in jeopardy.
This proves just how volatile the mobile market is, and leaves further questions in its tracks– will webOS be sold? Who will take the operating system on – perhaps HTC or Samsung? Or alternatively, what will rise in its place?
As for Apple, Jobs has been acclaimed for taking the enterprise from the brink of bankruptcy through a phenomenal growth that essentially capitalized on predicting what the customer wanted, before they knew it.
Smartphones, tablets and online music stores were a distant dream until Jobs added a “i” and a little white box which changed the mobile, music and PC market irrevocably. Now he has gone, so what will the future hold? Was Jobs the only man for the job, or did he set Apple on a trajectory that will position it as a market leader for years to come?
These influential changes in the mobile market simply go to prove that companies, no matter how much they try, can’t predict the future. Organizations need to deliver what’s needed now and they need to be ready for what’s demanded in the future. Putting all of a company’s eggs in to one basket, for example by only developing apps for the iPhone or not having a HTML5 offering for the latest smartphones, is a risky business.
Rather than looking at the multiple apps and devices and hastily scraping together a sub-standard mobile offering, enterprises need to step back and look for a technology that can control the mobile chaos.
A specifically designed code base that can make an app available on a new device as soon as it comes onto the market, taking advantage of the native features on the device, means that a company’s mobile strategy is future-proofed and of great quality – this is the only way to truly overcome the mobile chaos.