M-Business - The Race to Mobility



Book Authors: Marcia Robinson, Dr Ravi Kalakota

Book Review by : Vivek Gupta
Faculty Member, ICMR (IBS Center for Management Research)


e-business, m-business, IT industry, wireless devices, Network Infrastructure, B2B, B2C, C2C, Amazon, eBay, Aether, Air2Web, SMS, PDAs, value-added services, e-commerce, AT&T, OmniSky and Verizon

About the Authors Ravi Kalakota, Ph.D., is the CEO of the research and innovation consulting practice, e-Business Strategies. He has consulted extensively with Fortune 1000 companies including Intel, Sun Microsystems, SAP and AT&T. Dr. Kalakota has held the Xerox Chair in Information systems at the Simon Graduate School of Business, University of Rochester and School of Business, University of Texas at Austin.

He has co-authored the bestseller - e-Business: Roadmap for success. Marcia Robinson is president of e-Business Strategies. Along with her consulting experience in CRM, she has worked extensively in call center management, business outsourcing, and service process re-engineering. She is the co-author of e-Business: Roadmap for Success and e-Business 2.0: Roadmap for Success.

Book Snapshot: In the past decade, the world witnessed a revolutionary technology - the Internet that made possible to conduct e-business. This decade is witnessing the evolution of mobile business or m-business, which would bring significant changes in the way business is done. The book covers in detail the shift from e-business to m-business, the infrastructure required and the opportunities offered by m-business. It explains how the components of value chain would be affected by m-business. The book also provides insights on how and what strategies companies must develop to become successful in m-business.
The evolution of Internet has brought about a significant change in business processes. From offline to online and now to anytime at anyplace connectivity has radically changed the structure of many business activities. M-Business is offering opportunities for companies to develop value added services for their consumers. The existing mobile infrastructure, new technological developments and increased demand of mobile applications are all indicators of a bright future for mobile business.

Book Summary: The evolution of Internet has been in various phases. The earlier phase of the Internet allowed consumers and businesses to conduct e-business while the recent phase is witnessing m-business as well. The basic difference between them is the form of connectivity provided to the users. Users are connected through the wired web in e-business whereas m-business involves wireless web. Let us understand the key components of m-business and see how mobile technology is affecting e-business.

Shift from E to M-Business

The first phase of evolution in the IT industry led to the automation of various business activities. It then led to reengineering of business processes and finally enabled web-based transactions. From automation to enabling e-business, businesses have come a long way and have responded well to the changing environments in the recent years. Technology has played an important role in determining the future business plans of organizations and at the same time increased customer expectations as well.

The rising customer expectations were partly satisfied by the proliferation of new technologies primarily the wireless technologies that included the wireless Internet, innovative wireless devices and location technologies. Companies started using wireless technologies in their existing e-business model. They offered their existing Internet services with a value added mobility feature. The wireless technologies also helped in the better management of business processes. This combination of Internet, e-business and wireless technologies gave birth to mobile business.

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