Chapter 4. What Power?

This book is all about the power of mobility. Before we can get too far in capturing this power, we need to understand how the realities of mobility translate into power or value for your business.

For historical perspective, let’s recall how the personal computer (PC) and the Internet created value. The PC provided local computing power and storage, enabling the user to rapidly adapt computer-based work to her changing needs. This was most evident with the introduction of VisiCalc, the first PC-based spreadsheet software. Using VisiCalc on a PC enabled the user to run and rerun multiple different scenarios quickly and efficiently without needing to schedule computer time. The PC price point enabled companies to buy PCs for a growing portion of their employee base to capture this power, making employees more productive and leading to quicker and better decisions.

The Internet provided network connections that crossed organizational boundaries. This enabled information to more easily flow, especially from trusted content providers. It enabled computer-based transactions to occur between companies and their customers (both business and consumer). And it enabled improved communications, facilitating stronger relationships and accelerated decisions. These value enablers are often referred to as the three Cs: content, commerce, and community.

When we talk about mobility, we see two additional Cs coming into play in creating power or value: context and convergence. ...

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