Deloitte picks record smartphone/tablet sales

Deloitte New Zealand innovation leader Grant Frear says the 2012 report carries predictions with specific relevance to the New Zealand market, particularly around the ever-increasing relationships that consumers have with technology.

“What was once seen as nice-to-have is now must-have,” he says. “We are seeing traditional emotional attachment to houses and holidays give way to broadband, mobile phones and PVRs.”

He adds that, despite difficult economic conditions, consumers and businesses are still making significant investments in new technology, “particularly those which enrich their lives and make workplaces more productive or enjoyable”.

According to Frear, while the cost of many of these consumer devices is dropping, it appears consumers’ desire for more devices is insatiable.

The 2012 series of predictions draws on conversations with Deloitte member firm clients, contributions from member firms’ 7000 partners and managers specialising in TMT, discussions with industry analysts and interviews with leading executives from around the world.

Deloitte first started these reports back in 2001 when it made 10 predictions about mobile telephony. Since then, the scope of the reports has expanded to cover the converging technology, media and telecommunications industries.

The company says its reports aim to kindle debate on significant developments that may require companies or governments to respond.

Deloitte says 83 percent of the predictions in its 2011 report were borne out.

Speaking about the most recent report, Frear notes tablet sales have shown little sign of slowing down since the format hit the market in 2010. Five million tablets are likely to be sold this year to people that already own one.

That, he says, presents challenge for content owners, network operators and retailers who need to prepare to respond to the rise in the multi-tablet household.

“We most certainly live in an ‘and’ world now with smartphones, laptops, tablets and host of other devices supporting our personal and working lives. This has created pressure on consumers and we have seen their buying priorities change. It would seem that technologies are winning the battle for the wallet for many consumers,” Frear says.

“Businesses are not immune from some of these consumer trends. What happens at the edge of consumer technology is making it to the heart of business faster than ever. For instance, the amount of time it took for the iPad to become the executive tool of choice was staggering.

“All this puts more pressure on IT departments to rethink the employee experience to match the consumer experience.”

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