Pew Internet and a pocket-sized connection

Future_III_Report_covAs my study continues in the field of interactive marketing and mobile markets, I feel I must take advantage of Elon’s partnership with the Pew Internet Project (aptly titled Imaging the Internet: A History and Forecast) and the impressive amount of progressive research being produced there.

The project’s most recent survey (The Future of the Internet III) invited technology experts and social analysts to produce predictive statements tied to eight compelling considerations for the year 2010. The eight primary topics studied were the evolution of mobile Internet communications, social tolerance, IP law and copyright protection, privacy and transparency, augmented and virtual realities, Internet user interfaces, the architecture of the Internet and the concept of work and leisure.

Of these topics, I will focus most on the development of the mobile Internet for my research (the first topic). Here’s a snapshot of the findings I found to be interesting:

Survey participants were asked to respond to the following scenario:

The mobile phone is the primary connection tool for most people in the world. In 2020, while “one laptop per child” and other initiatives to bring networked digital communications to everyone are successful on many levels, the mobile phone—now with significant computing power—is the primary Internet connection and the only one for a majority of the people across the world, providing information in a portable, well-connected form at a relatively low price. Telephony is offered under a set of universal standards and protocols accepted by most operators internationally, making for reasonably effortless movement from one part of the world to another. At this point, the “bottom” three-quarters of the world’s population account for at least 50% of all people with Internet access—up from 30% in 2007.

Compiled reactions from the 1,196 respondents:

81% Mostly agreed
19% Mostly disagreed
*% Did not respond

Expert respondents’ reactions (N=578):

77% Mostly agreed
22% Mostly disagreed
*% Did not respond

The general consensus here is that mobile Internet devices will increase in popularity worldwide due to factors like cost-efficiency. Do you agree or disagree with these conclusions?

Are you prepared for a world with a pocket-sized Internet?

If you’re not sure, you could gain some insight from the official Pew Internet & American Life report on the 2008 Predictions Study or a visit to Imagining the Internet


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