My friend Ian Wood had been working on his predictions of the mobile industry in 2009. Ian feels that the mobile industry needs a figurehead like Bill Gates (formerly of Microsoft) or John Chambers of Cisco Systems. He thinks that a figurehead would be able to provide the industry with the direction and the vision.
Its an interesting concept; admittedly Gates and Chambers were powerful because they are at the centre of their respective industries and could steer their industries (at least for a time).
Ian looks to this person:
- To provide the industry with a publicly articulated vision that focuses on customer utility rather than features and understands what the killer applications are
- To bang the heads together of the supply chain to get them all to work together
There are a couple of things that I would put out there to think about:
- With power comes great responsibility, if you managed to achieve everything that Ian outlines, it would put this person in a tremendous position of power and would require a large degree of altruism by this person towards the industry
- What is the mobile industry now? Is it an industry in its own right? Are mobile infrastructure and handset companies IT and technology companies in reality? Is mobile content a sub-set of the mobile industry or a sub-set of the media and entertainment industry? Given these questions, the industry needs to work out what it is first, even carriers need to work out their reason for existing beyond shareholder value