It’s a kind of magic!

 

Trends & Brands: Smartphones
Written by Merle Veurman (16-09-2016)

 

It wakes you up in the morning, it updates you on the news, you stress if you don’t know where it is and you can’t go outside without seeing it in people their hands. I am of course talking about the smartphone. In the last couple of years the smartphone has become a thing that you can’t seem to live without. 58% of smartphone users actually don’t go more than an hour without checking their phone and 9% of U.S. adult actually use their smartphones during sex (Buzinga 2015). It is weird to realise that the smartphone wasn’t a thing ten years ago. Let’s dive in to this trend that changed the way we communicate, the way we live and the world we live in.

 

When in February 2007 chief executive of Apple Steve Jobs revealed the iPhone he said it is “a revolutionary and magical product that is literally five years ahead of any other mobile phone”. A revolution it has been. This was the start of the trend in the eye of the general public. Smartphones are a trend because it has, among others, changed norms and added value to society. I remember my granddad telling a story about how him and my nan where traveling to London and he thought it was the weirdest thing that people actually where outside talking on their phones. Back then it was normal having a landline and not a mobile device. Now even he has a smartphone. The norm has changed. No one would look weird at you if you make a call outside. But this new norm has also made life easier, it has added a certain value to society. You can find your way easier through Google Maps, express your feelings when sending a message using emoticons, check if it’s going to rain before you go out and these are only a few things.

 

Smartphones are a micro trend. They happen on a product/market level. If a micro trend is going to be successful is hard to predict. When Steve Jobs revealed the iPhone the chief executive of Microsoft jokily said that it was the most expensive phone in the world. He thought it the iPhone would be a big gaff. He couldn’t be more wrong. It is 2016 now and the iPhone is still one of the best selling smartphones in the world. Micro trends are based on meso trends. A meso trend on which the smartphones are based is, among others, globalisation, which I talked about in my last article. Because of globalisation people travel a lot more. A smartphones makes it easier to work, look up information and communicate whilst traveling. The consumers needed a smartphone to keep up with their new lifestyle.


Number of smartphones sold to end users worldwide

screen-shot-2016-09-14-at-15-44-18
Figure 1 (Statista 2016)

 

Smartphones ownership is still growing. In figure 1 we can see that smartphone ownership is still exponentially growing. Smartphone are being used up by the general public, you see them everywhere! This means that, when we look at the trend lifecycle, the smartphone can be placed at the stage of the followers. However the people who are now picking up, I think, are quite late since smartphones have been around for almost ten years. I think there will be a new ‘thing’. Something that will still meet most needs we’d like to have in a small portable computer like a smartphone but works even easier, faster and more efficiently. I don’t think the smartphone is here to stay for another 15 years. We see companies experimenting with this like for example Google with Google glasses. Yes, this was not as successful as Google has probably hoped for and it has never been a danger to the existence of the smartphone, however it is a step towards something new. I think it only takes one company, maybe even one person, to come up with a brilliant idea for the smartphone to be replaced, to bring the smartphone to its downwards stages of the trend lifecycle.

 

What do you think? Will the smartphone be replaced soon by something else or is the smartphone here to stay for another decade? What do you think the next big thing would be if the smartphone where to be replaced?

 

Sources
Buzinga. Home. Retrieved 14 September 2016 from http://www.buzinga.com.au/

 

Filehippo. Allanah. Latest Figures Show Who is Winning The Smartphone Battle (16 August 2013). Retrieved 15 September 2016 from

http://news.filehippo.com/2013/08/latest-figures-show-who-is-winning-the-smartphone-battle/

 

The Guardian. Arthur, C. The history of smartphones: timeline (24 january 2012). Retrieved 14 September 2016 from

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2012/jan/24/smartphones-timeline

 

IB Times. Mathew, J. Nokia still second largest mobile phone company (17 December 2016). Retrieved 15 September 2016 from

http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/nokia-still-second-largest-mobile-phone-company-terms-unit-sales-1479924

 

Learn.hu.nl. Trends & Brands (Trend Theory). Retrieved 14-15 September 2016 from

https://learn.hu.nl/pluginfile.php/5303/mod_resource/content/2/Tand%20B%20block%20A%201617%20trend%20theory.pdf

 

Statista. Number of smartphones sold to end users worldwide from 2007 to 2015 (in million units) (2015). Retrieved 14 September 2016 from

http://www.statista.com/statistics/263437/global-smartphone-sales-to-end-users-since-2007/ (figure 1)

 

Snugg. A brief history of smartphones. Retrieved 14 September from

http://www.thesnugg.com/a-brief-history-of-smartphones.aspx

 

Youtube. BizInterests. Smartphone Addiction: Statistics You Need To Know (23 September 2015). Retrieved 14 September 2016 from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJ6g0kUJjZs

 

 

 

 

 

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6 thoughts on “It’s a kind of magic!

  1. The tempo of the growing technology is fast. We can’t keep that up. The next decade I think, the smartphone is replaced in your wrist by a chip. Your wrist will be your personal smartphone. Always at hand, you can’t lose it and it can not be stolen. Uploading new data in your wrist phone is just over an ultra- secure WiFi network. No equipment, just a chip, simple and easy!

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  2. I think your subject is a good one. The day we did trend spotting at the Uithof. There was everywhere a lot of students with their phone. It’s nowadays also a normal thing, to have the phone all day in your hand when you walking. I caught myself also on this trend.

    And because everyone does it, it looks very normal for everyone. But if you go back in the time it’s indeed a weird trend.

    I think the smartphone is here already for a long time. And I think he stays here for more years, but I also think that there about a few years a replacement comes for the smartphone. Something smaller and easer to keep, maybe something like the I-watch but then more elaborate.

    But maybe is there indeed in the future also only a chip for under your skin. I see that happen in the future, the chip you can never forget and it’s also impossible to steal it.
    At the other side nowadays are there already chips. But these chips are not very handy; it’s maybe something faster. But the chip has also healthy risks; in this time I never put a chip in my hand. An Utrechter placed this year a OV-chard under his skin. He even has more chips in his hand for example to open his shop. After he gives his self the chip in his hand, there is well a hump on his hand but he found it worth. (NOS, 2016)

    NOS. Utrechter implanted a chip in his own hand Retrieved 19 September 2016 from
    http://nos.nl/artikel/2117413-utrechter-implanteert-ov-chip-in-hand.html

    Jacky Tegelaar – 1663539

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  3. Nice article.

    Now my answer to the questions.
    I think the smartphone is going to be replaced. But not really fast.
    Because of the fact people are buying even more and more phones and the rise in other products, think about smartwatches/google glass, isn’t that good. Also there isn’t another product on the market right now that can compare with the smartphone we have nowadays.

    The next thing that will be on the market would be something even more abstract/compact. Maybe something with a chip or holographic. But I think we need to develop a lot before we get there.

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  4. IT’S A KIND OF MAGIC! – Merle Veurman
    I think this is a great subject to discuss about. Personally did not think about it yet because the smartphone is just that normal in out life. Everyone now a day has a smartphone. Being social on the network is just a common thing to do and therefore is the smartphone a object what becomes a need for a lot of people. To my opinion will smartphones disappear is a copal of years. Now there are already object which contains smartphone functions. The google glasses and watches are one of the biggest examples.
    According to this article people believe the smartphones will replaces by an ‚All interface” This will browse the web, book restaurant, etc all for you.
    Big companies are worried about this swift. That is why Apple is already thinking and experimenting with new technologies. This to make it more common for people. The technology is getting smarter and the all interface assistant is coming.
    I think they are on the right path. Smartphones are going to disappear and you know it is true if you look at the newest technology. Maybe in 10 years all people get a chip implanted which takes cares of all our smart devices. Do you think this can became real a or do you think I became crazy? 😉

    Lauren van Sambeek 1659140
    Fossbytes.(2016) Smartphones will disappear in 5 years. retrieved September 20, from:
    https://fossbytes.com/smartphones-will-disappear-in-5-years-according-to-study/

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  5. Interesting article! The questions you’ve asked are very relevant for us as CMD students, and I’ve noticed that this subject is a very hot topic among students and teachers.
    I personally don’t think that smartphones will be replaced within a decade, because to me it’s still a device that has endless undeveloped possibilities. Everyday we’re introduced to new features such as using our smartphones as payment card, key and remote control. I feel like the world isn’t completely ready for the concepts that people name as possible replacements. For instance the implanting of chips, mentioned by other commenters. When I look at the worldwide concern about personal user data privacy I don’t think that people will be comfortable with implanting chips anytime soon. Some people will be very enthusiastic to experience it, to try the newest of the newest. But it will take a lot of time before everyone will feel like their personal privacy is still safe with a chip in their body. I think the idea is still a bit too futuristic for most people and ahead of it’s time.

    I do think that within a decade the smartphone will have tons of new innovative features and the way we use them will be changed. But when can you really say that a device has been replaced? Smartphones took over the world, but my parents still have a landline that they use frequently even though they both own a smartphone. In the end, even with all the adjustments and developments a smartphone is still a phone, developed in 1860. So when will we say that the smartphone has been replaced? When they stop making them? When the ‘next big thing’ can’t be used to call someone anymore as we know it? Or maybe when it doesn’t has the shape of a phone anymore, but only comes in the form of a watch or glasses? The answers to these questions will be known eventually, but I feel like right now, the smartphone isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.

    Wolpin, S. (2013) Your Smartphone in 2018: 15 Futuristic Features. Retrieved from:
    http://www.laptopmag.com/articles/futuristic-smartphone-features

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  6. Hi Merle,

    Interesting read. It’s indeed unimaginable how fast the smartphone has reshaped our communication and how it impacted the world. In my opinion the arrival of the smartphone mostly resulted in good things. We can request information in split seconds and contact anybody from everywhere. However, in the eyes of the “old world”, the world where we didn’t have smartphones, we have become less social and lazier. In my opinion we have become more social and efficient.

    You ask if the smartphone is going to be replaced by something else soon. It depends how you look at it. Is the smartphone as product going to be replaced? Yes, technology will always be innovated. Is the functionality of a smartphone going to be replaced? No, I don’t think so. Sure, there will always be some new kind of product on the market. But, the smartphone is not just a product, is has become an extension of our body. Without the services the smartphone offers, we probably would be saddled with problems.

    On the other hand, there are some drawbacks to the smartphone. For example, there is this mental disorder called FoMO, what basically stands for “Fear of Missing Out” (Keating, 2014). It’s a scary thing. Some people really can’t put their phone away because they think they miss out of important information. Do you think this is a serious and dangerous disorder? Or is it harmless and just the result of the short presence of the smartphone?

    Keating, T. (2014). FOMO, digital dementia, and our dangerous experiment. Retrieved 9 January, 2017, from

    http://s3.amazonaws.com/academia.edu.documents/44832931/1-s2.0-S1550830713003479-main.pdf?AWSAccessKeyId=AKIAJ56TQJRTWSMTNPEA&Expires=1483960255&Signature=0dWuLJQSxir7oExX1cOdK%2BdAf3g%3D&response-content-disposition=inline%3B%20filename%3DThe_governmentality_of_master_planning_h.pdf

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