Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Growth of digital networks and Korea's (Samsung's?) place in it

I was thinking this morning about the rapid global spread of connected, smart devices and the dominant role of Korea's large chaebol groups in the manufacture of those devices.  Two graphics tell an important part of the story.   The first is a graphic from statista, based on data from IDC.   It shows clearly that shipments of smartphones and tablets are projected to dominate the global market, while those for desktop PCs (do you still use one?) are set to decline and portable PCs (notebooks/laptops) will only slightly increase.  In a nutshell, this projection suggests that, all other things equal, people prefer a mobile device.  Even in the office or at home, a device without all those cords and wires to connect is more convenient to use.  Since I live in Korea, it is only appropriate to note that the boundary between smart phones and tablets is blurring with the release of increasingly large, high resolution phones that are preferred by a distinct market segment.
The second graphic, published by The Economist, shows how quickly Samsung, followed by Apple, came to dominate the global market for smartphones in just four years, starting in 2010. Keep in mind that Samsung did not really enter the smartphone market until that year, having left the global smartphone market pretty much to Apple until the end of 2009, two and a half years after its introduction of the revolutionary i-Phone. There is much more to this story, but I am reminded that there is also value in short blog posts!  Suffice it to say that the landscape (or ecosystem) of our hyper connected world continues to change at a rapid rate.

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