I promise the headline isn’t just industry hyperbole. It really is an awesome time to work in digital.
We’re looking at the very beginning of what’s been coined ‘The Internet of Things’ (or, ‘The Internet of Everything’ according to Qualcomm in their infamously absurd keynote at CES 2013).
The internet of things is an umbrella term that’s generally used to group technology together, such as embedded and wearables, two things which are set to change the way that brands communicate with consumers.
Examples of embedded computing could be Smart TVs, Smart Cars and, in general, traditional household objects such as fridges; now increasingly being equipped with technology to perform additional tasks.
Google glasses are a prime example of wearables, and a new and shiny paragon demonstrating that we’ve now reached a point technically where we can equip something as small as a pair of glasses with incredible smarts.
And really, it only takes a minute of introspection to realise how these types of devices could change your own daily routines, and mostly for the better. When my fridge can not only send me an email telling me that I need to buy milk, but also that I’m eating too much bread and getting fat, I’ll feel like we’re getting somewhere.
The thing is though, that’s going to happen a lot sooner than most people think. I wouldn’t be surprised if it happened in 2013. And that’s the bottom line here.
A pro-active rather than reactive behaviour to future changes is what separates the great sectors of our industry from the rest. Similar to the drastic emergence of mobile browsing in the past and the ubiquitous buzzword that is responsive design, the people and businesses that prepared early for the change in appetite for online content are in a much better position today.
Reacting on the back foot and falling behind is a seat that no business wants to find itself in.
I can’t say that I see the emergence of embedded and wearable being very different. There’s a plethora of research, projections and statistics available to digest regarding these devices. There are plenty of products in the field right now. It’s hasn’t been a question of ‘if’ for quite some time now, but only a matter of when. Most likely embedded and wearable devices will be a prevalent way to consume media, and that means there are a lot of things that need to change in how we prepare digital content.
The manner which Australian brands prepare for the added touch points where customers can interact with their brand is going to be fascinating, and the advertising industry will be right in the thick of it.
Erik Hallander is interactive director at Visual Jazz Isobar.