Human behaviour typically reflects several aspects of the immediate environment. While the user remains the same person, their surroundings are driving how they act. As we have seen time and time again – whether with i-mode, the original ‘app store’, or camera-phones – it is the whole ecosystem which drives adoption at scale. At the end of all wireless pipes, worldwide, there is a paying customer with a device in their hand.
One clear shift in Japan is the migration to smartphones, most noticeable in major urban areas, with carriers expecting over 50% of the new units shipped this year to be PDA-style models. This hardware certainly does increase the time spent on the contents and services users already know, along with discovery of new offerings. The early lead in that area from overseas makers, such as Apple, HTC and Samsung, is giving way to domestic handset makers which have been producing built-to-order devices which include key functions (Digital TV, Flash and NFC) that have been long-ubiquitous on feature phones here.
It’s a short essay (1000 words), but has bits and pieces of perspective that are chock full of nuggets to explore for the discerning reader. Check out the rest of the Lars’s article at Canvas8 and don’t forget to keep your eyes open.