Love or hate the Apple iPad, no one can argue that it certainly captured the media’s attention. The concept of a tablet computer is certainly not new, but we are just now approaching a technological point where mass adoption of this could revolutionize multiple industries.
Picture this: you walk into a restaurant and the waiter has an Apple iPad that allows him to wirelessly and easily place your order, without error. After your meal, you pay immediately using the iPad and Square application being developed by a co-founder of Twitter. After doing so, the waiter leaves the device with you with a screen automatically up to review and rate the service and food, and distributes this feedback to services like Google, Yelp, Foursquare and others. We can even take this one step further, and say an application on the iPad will reference what you ordered and suggest dessert or coffee shops nearby and give you the reviews for each of these, if applicable.
With that said, we can only image future possibilities for all other industries.
Some may consider this technology straight out of science fiction, but it is becoming real right in front of our eyes. Consider the possibilities for advertising and big business – but also for startups and new markets this will create.
Magazines will become interactive; a great example of this is the Wired Magazine mock-up for the iPad. The New York Times demonstrated an app for the iPad during the announcement that allows the newspaper to become interactive. This is certainly the direction media is headed, and in the future will be consumed.
Social media as we currently know it will be further ingrained in our daily lives. Smart businesses will use this information as a way to start conversations with potential prospects and customers alike. In particular by making advertising interactive, we could quickly speak with representatives from companies that are advertising. If after seeing an interactive Ford Motors ad you decide you want more information, you can instantly have a brochure sent to you on that model. Then, perhaps a representative will contact you over Twitter–or any other medium–that provides a lot of value and power to not only manufacturers but the advertising industry.
Thus far we have talked a lot about print, in various forms, and ways the iPad could revolutionize the industry. But how about television, or music?
With services such as Netflix and Hulu expanding across more networks it will only be a matter of time before we can stream all content to our mobile devices like the iPad. Comcast and Time Warner Cable are mulling over streaming services as a way to allow their customers access to TV programming on the go. When we dive more into that, just think that if you could not make it home for your favorite TV show, you could instead take your iPad out and start watching on the go! It is innately powerful to be able to carry all your media, or at least have access to all of it from anywhere at anytime.
The next few years will be interesting as new developments start to emerge, social trends, digital streaming technology and content network deals. I look forward to seeing the coming technology and how it will further revolutionize how we consume and interact with media in our day-to-day lives.