We’re living in the age of acceleration, and things will still move faster going forward -- pushed ahead by the low entry costs that the cloud enables, ever-increasing wireless broadband speeds, and the rise of HTML5 and WebRTC, among other factors.
That was the word from the Age of Acceleration: Tipping Point panelists this morning at ITEXPO Miami.
The speaker lineup included Phil Edholm of PKE Consulting LLC and UCStrategies.com, who heads up the WebRTC Expo; Carl Ford, CEO and co-founder of Crossfire Media, which puts together the M2M Evolution conference, among other events; and Larry Lisser, principal of Embrase Business Consulting, which stages the StartupCamp event. The panel, which was moderated by TMC leader Rich Tehrani, also included Peter Bernstein and Erik Linask, who is a senior editor and editorial director at TMC, respectively.
“We’re in the maturation of the Internet age,” said former analyst Bernstein. “The new normal is that change is the only constant we can think of.”
The rate of change, and fickleness of the consumer, makes it very challenging for businesses to decide what offerings to bring to market and continue to invest in, noted Lisser.
“Fast follower,” Lisser added, used to be a negative term. But now, he indicated, those that can be described by this term have a better chance of success.
While the rate of change is challenging to business, the good news is that it has resulted in devices, infrastructure and tools that allow people to communicate easily and in real time with friends, family, colleagues and customers, said Linask.
WebRTC is positioned to enable even more interesting opportunities for communications in the future.
Edholm explained that WebRTC puts a media engine into the browser and enables individuals to communicate directly with servers, as opposed to requiring server-to-server interactions to enable communication. As discussed in the December issue of INTERNET TELEPHONY, that means developers can build real-time communication into Web pages. Indeed, Edholm today commented that any organization that owns a website or has key business processes that involves the Web ought to learn more about what WebRTC can enable.
As in the past with other technologies, WebRTC is now opening the door to outside forces to enter the communications industry, and that’s likely to drive further change, Lisser suggested. He said the next 18 to 24 months will be a great window of opportunity for those using WebRTC to do new things and create some great businesses.
The panel also touched on M2M, which has to do with communication-enabling any or all people and things.
The applications for M2M are broad, ranging from allowing businesses to remotely keep tabs on assets such as fleet and inventory; monitoring patients from afar; or seeing if a soda machine needs more Diet Coke.
Ford and Tehrani also mentioned an interesting application of M2M that allows authorities to locate and prosecute individuals who cut down trees in the Amazon rainforest. This involved outfitting trees with M2M-enabled sensors, which alert authorities as to the movement and location of the trees.
Edited by Brooke Neuman