FML Blog

“Smart phones and tablets are really changing the way that people are engaging with technology”


Monday, April 28, 2014      Marjolaine Detry      0
During Future Media Lab. annual conference in January 2014we had an opportunity to discuss media innovations with Paul Lee, partner at Keystone Strategy. He shared with us his views on the way technology is changing consumer behaviour based on what he observed at Keystone, a consulting firm that develops innovative, data-driven strategies to create sustained improvement performance. Paul was the keynote speaker at the "Future of Content" conference in January 2014 and is a member of the Future Media Minds.

FML: Future Media Lab.
PL: Paul Lee

FML: Do you think technology is driving consumer behaviour or vice versa? PL: Technology definitely drives consumer behaviour. However one of the things that is absolutely constant in life is that there are 24 hours in a day, and when you start to look at the way that people are interacting with technology, the way that people divide up their day moves in small subtle ways. And the introduction of technology definitely changes that. So there are a lot of entrepreneurs, especially in Silicon Valley and other entrepreneurial areas where those entrepreneurs are giving consumers different ways that they can engage with technology. So those are things that are driving consumer behavior. And consumers just pick up on the media, the trends and just interact with people and services in ways that end up being a reflection of the technology but driving consumer interest.

FML: And what technology do you think has the most impact on the live consumer?


 PL: Especially in the last few years there has been a difference in form factors. So, smart phones and tablets are really changing the way that people are engaging with technology. One of the interesting statistics that we see is that most people interact with their phone or a tablet while they’re watching TV and so you can start to multitask with technology. Those are just some of the changes.

FML: This is more or less the hardware. What about the software or skills? PL: Well, first, with software the change is also incredibly dramatic. The very first thing is that people are beginning to become aware of app-oriented interaction with technologies. So, on one hand an app is just for many companies a reflection of just a website that would normally exist on the internet and so a lot of apps are just access to that website on a mobile device. But now with games and other rich ways of interacting, people can do very different things with apps than they have in the past. So, apps is one thing; services is another. People engage with the internet in order to gain access to services. So those are tremendous differences from simply devices.

FML: What do you think is the biggest challenge and the biggest threat about these changes in consumers’ minds? PL: Well, the biggest challenge for providers is a culture of data and analytics. It’s both an opportunity and a threat. So one thing is, there are companies that are really trying to understand and make use of data that’s available on the internet and to the extent that companies aren’t embracing a culture of data and analytics and data science, they’ll be left behind because the power of data gives people the ability to iterate, learn very quickly, and innovate very quickly.

FML: How will the future of content, let’s say journalism, be seen in this context?


 PL: I think the very first thing is that there’s going to be new modes of input sources, so whether it’s video or security cameras or pictures or blogs, those are tremendous amount of information being reported on the internet today which serves as a tremendous source of information.

FML: Who will be the consumer and how will they consume content in 5-10 years? PL: Well, 10 years is a tremendous amount of time with new technologies. Even 5-6 years ago we didn’t have the prevalence of Android, smart phones, iPhones and tablets as we do today. In 10 years I think the changes will be dramatic. One of the areas that really need to improve is the way that people interact with devices. So, touch and motion and the ability for people to provide input to devices are really going to change things and I think that media, journalism, interaction, multimedia are going to have to change accordingly.

To learn more about this conference, please check out the post-conference report.
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