It’s Pervasive, Not Mobile

Similar to the point I made in the Finding Opportunities, Solving Problems post, framing the discussion around mobile computing misses the real point, the real opportunity. When we approach the issue as mobile computing/marketing/etc, we are essentially thinking once again in terms of channels.

Good ideas and executions can, of course, come from such a narrowly focused and tactical approach to problem solving or opportunity spotting. @whurey reminds us, however, that there are many, many more opportunities when the issue is more broadly considered from the perspective of pervasive or ubiquitous computing, where every surface becomes a potential interface. It’s not just limited to those canonically recognizable devices.

The questions we should be asking ourselves when seeking opportunities or solving problems should not include a tactical channel. Ask not “what can we do with mobile” but “what can we do to capture our consumers’ attention when they are at the park/in the mall/at the coffee shop/at the bus stop/etc.” When we limit our ideas and solutions to a certain channel, we’ve cut ourselves off from so many other possibilities. When we remove those channel limitations, the world, as they say, is our oyster.