The Evolution of Communications Moving to Real-Time
How are people communicating differently? A talk yesterday featured a consideration of the changing nature of communications in the Internet era and what users are looking for. Mohammad Nezarati, of Avaya, delivered a keynote talk at the IT Expo in Anaheim on “The Evolution of Communications”. Pointing out that half of the world is able to be online and that “there are more people that have access to mobile phones than to working toilets” (there are 7 billion people in the world – 6 billion of whom have access to phones, while only 4.5 billion have access to toilets), Nezarati observed that this “contrasts a shift in our thought with what it means to be connected.”
Nezarati marshalled further statistics to demonstrate “the massive growth” in online communications, beginning with 12 million emails sent per day in 2000, while in 2015, there is estimated to be 204 billion per day. Email, Nezarati pointed out is “a type of collaboration”, since people use it to collaborate on myriad projects, events, etc. However, Nezarati noted, more and more of us are using real-time collaboration and “email is not a real-time application.” Nowadays, there is a “modality of real-time and expected to be there”, which can especially be seen with looking at how many SMS messages were sent: there were 12 million sent in the month of June 2000, while there were over 561 billion SMS messages sent in June 2014.
Another trend that Nezarati mentioned is that less people are using desktop applications and more are using the cloud: “there has been a massive trend to moving towards the cloud”, so much so that “we live in the cloud” now.
However, no matter what application someone is using, people need to be able to use those applications to get things done. And since “apps do not last very long”, as Nezarati pointed out, “everybody wants to download something new.” However, if an app “causes any friction, then users will uninstall it and they won’t download it again.”
“At the end of the day, people care about getting their work done,” said Nezarati, and “they want to do it with the tools that are effective to get their work done.” One problem that occurs is when “we expect people to change their habits in order to use the tools we’ve provided for them”, which does not seem to work. Instead, frictionless deployment of one’s systems will be helpful, since “without being in their face, without causing them grief, that’s the way to drive success.” It’s better to create things that work within the way that people are already living their lives.