Dec 12

Three trends to watch for 2013

I’m starting to think about next year, what I want to get done, what I want our team (join us) to accomplish, what I’d love to see other companies build on our platform. Here are three trends I’m generally thinking about.

Mobile. Obvious – but stop thinking about devices. That’s completely missing the point. Mobile is about access to any information anywhere in the world. When you think about it that way it becomes clear that it will fundamentally change commerce. The automobile led to big box retail (took the store to the edge of town, made the shopping experience more anonymous), the internet led to e-commerce (no physical store needed, completely anonymous as you don’t interact with anyone), mobile will lead to _______ …we don’t know yet. Personally I think mobile will lead to a resurgence in physical stores, non-anonymous customer interactions and integrated offline/online experiences.

Small networks. Many start-ups are building products/services for small groups. That could be small groups of very close friends, or a group of people who don’t know each other who are into a niche activity/hobby. This is a huge opportunity, huge growth area. It’s what my book is about and it’s exciting to see it emerge.

Aggregation of data. We’ll see a shift as people think not only about individual stories as the focus of what is being published and consumed, but also towards powerful aggregated experiences that tell a bigger picture. Don’t think about what song I listened to, think about my favourite music this week, this year. Don’t think about yesterday’s 3 mile run, think about my marathon training. Don’t think about the shirt I pinned, think about the fashion trends I’m following, the styles I like. Don’t think about the flight I took, think about all the people and places I visit.

It will be a very exciting year for people building things!