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Opinions expressed on this blog reflect the writer’s views and not the position of the Capgemini Group

On holiday? What are you using to read this?

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What to write about in the middle of August with most Europeans on holiday? Well the answer is pretty clearly mobility and the change in expectations of what being on holiday means. If work has already changed from the definitions of attendance at a certain place at a certain time to use the provided tools (i.e. being in your designated office during business hours using your enterprise-provided PC), then does the definition of being on holiday and therefore out of touch still hold?

According to the statistics I can find it depends on your country and their acceptable social habits, i.e. in France when the entire population tends to be off work in August, it seems to be more acceptable than in the UK, and of course in the USA it is almost unacceptable to be out of touch. But what does being in touch mean? I accept that I might be a little more technology conscious than average, though in the case of my point I’m not sure that’s true.

I use a tablet (it’s an iPad actually) to read newspapers and stay up to date with other interests such as the weather forecast for the coming ten days, (well it’s a holiday and in northern Europe that’s a pretty variable quality), then I need to figure out places to go, or places to eat. Interestingly I do use a Kindle to read books though as I find it better than using the iPad because my mind tends to wander and I drift off looking at other things on the Web. That’s before I get to my smartphone which I carry all the time as an unobtrusive belt-mounted item with my enterprise eMail, SMS and, of course, to make a few phone calls.

I expect to find free WiFi reasonably easily in hotels, restaurants and coffee bars, and I even have an app to help, and 3G should be universal in any town for my phone. In short I use the mobility to help me have a better holiday by finding out the local secrets as to where and when to visit places or where to eat etc. If you, as a mature person, are not so dependant then take a look around and the chances are that within sight the 16 to 30 year-olds are there with device in hand busy interacting with their ‘life’.

Mobility is increasingly nothing more or less than a fact of life, and yet we are still struggling to understand what it means to many enterprises, and in many cases the senior management who are the least likely to have made a life change are the decision makers for their enterprises. On the other hand, if you are reading this then it’s likely you are a ‘modern’ person and so here is something to help you make the point about usage and change that might, just might, gain attention and persuade your less enlightened colleagues.

comScore has introduced a new service to track and analyze exactly what devices are using what services and creating what traffic profiles so now it’s all there to prove just how dramatically mobility-based usage is growing. Cisco has joined in with research on the myth and the facts of the way the Internet is changing in terms of use with a fascinating series of charts and points. More information, including a breakdown by age group on who is using what type of devices and for what in mobility, complete with one or two surprises is available from iPass too.

So happy reading! Oh and of course have a great holiday!!!

About the author

Andy Mulholland
Andy Mulholland
Capgemini Global Chief Technology Officer until his retirement in 2012, Andy was a member of the Capgemini Group management board and advised on all aspects of technology-driven market changes, together with being a member of the Policy Board for the British Computer Society. Andy is the author of many white papers, and the co-author three books that have charted the current changes in technology and its use by business starting in 2006 with ‘Mashup Corporations’ detailing how enterprises could make use of Web 2.0 to develop new go to market propositions. This was followed in May 2008 by Mesh Collaboration focussing on the impact of Web 2.0 on the enterprise front office and its working techniques, then in 2010 “Enterprise Cloud Computing: A Strategy Guide for Business and Technology leaders” co-authored with well-known academic Peter Fingar and one of the leading authorities on business process, John Pyke. The book describes the wider business implications of Cloud Computing with the promise of on-demand business innovation. It looks at how businesses trade differently on the web using mash-ups but also the challenges in managing more frequent change through social tools, and what happens when cloud comes into play in fully fledged operations. Andy was voted one of the top 25 most influential CTOs in the world in 2009 by InfoWorld and is grateful to readers of Computing Weekly who voted the Capgemini CTOblog the best Blog for Business Managers and CIOs each year for the last three years.

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