Posted by & filed under Ecommerce, M-commerce, Uncategorized, wireless networks.

Description: The term “smartphone” may sound cool and hip, but it’s actually been around since at least the mid-1990s.

Source: CNN.com Tech

Date: Oct 18, 2010

The ’90s version of the smartphone was nothing like the gadgets many of us tote around in our pockets today. It was the size of a brick, it didn’t have a color screen and, according to a phone market analyst, users could see only one line of e-mail at a time, meaning they had to scroll down a dozen times just to get to the start of a message.

Yet, when we talk about our present-day, touch-screen mobile computers — with their app stores, GPS services and other invented-since-the-’90s whizbangs — many of us still call them smartphones. Click here for rest of story

Questions for discussion:

  • Should a business’s e-commerce model be the same as the company’s M-commerce model?
  • Do the new smartphones deal sufficiently with the issues of M-commerce ie. Input and output, bandwidth and security?
  • Do you feel that mobile computing will be the dominant segment of e-commerce market in the future?

36 Responses to “In 2010, what counts as a smartphone?”

  1. Dustin Moore

    I believe that the word smartphone will be around until some kind of device takes over cell phones, which I think is a long time away. The cell phone market is to wide and the technology blooming at the pace that it is companies will continue to build these markets. I also think that the word “smartphone” should be used the way it is used but when it is expanded to new possibility it should be renamed smartphone II or something along these lines. This is due to thinking about how this word has been around for 20 years and a smartphone only needs to do a couple things to be deemed a smartphone it just does not make sense. The technology in the last 20 years especially with cell phones, you can not put the phone from 1990 and iphone would just not be realistic. So in my opinion companies need to make guidelines to what different names of these smart phones could be.

  2. Scott S

    Before I had a smartphone I really didn’t see the big deal with it. I thought I can make a call when I want and if I need to I can go and look on my computer at home. Since I have had my smartphone I don’t know how people can live without one. I really believe that smartphones as we now call them will be the way that business gets done in the future. I can access just about everything from my smartphone. When your smartphone lets you access things like your banking, e-mail, can give you directions to any where in the world it is smart. I don’t care what the name is or will be in the future all I know is that I’m glad it is available to us.

  3. Josh F

    I feel that mobiling computing will be a dominat segment of e-commerce market. By looking at how technologically advanced smart phones have become, many businesses in society now rely on online transactions with customers wherether it be at a PC or on a cell phone. This technology provides both firms and customers to conduct business in any location within their cell service area. I believe that this is where mobile computing is going, and I think alot of firms are already there.

  4. Dave D

    I believe that the definition for smartphone will be ever changing to fit the new criteria that phones will have. This seems to be a great debate on what smartphone really entails which makes it hard to exactly come up with a definition for the term smartphone. Companies are constantly coming up with new ideas to get a competitive advantage which therefore causes this blurry area. At the moment though, there is some criteria that every company is shooting for such as the ones listed in this article.

  5. Fiona Jin

    I think that the concept of M-commerce is derived from E-commerce, the only difference is that E-commerce is based on PC, but M-commerce is more doing business in mobile. Now, some applications such as kijiji and ebay can offer that people can trading in their mobile. Therefore, I believe that in somehow, e-commerce can be the same as m-commerce. I download kijiji application in my iphone, it is very convenient. You can take picture of your selling stuff and upload directly in your phone and then post the ad. I think company can also do the way that I did, and I believe it is a trend in the future to doing business through mobile.

  6. Brandon MacDonald

    M-commerce is still quite a different beast than E-commerce, simply due to the built in limitations of the mobile platform. They are becoming more and more powerful but it will be a while before they can truly compete and replace a full blown computer. That being said M-commerce offers business a distinct advantage – near constant connectivity. People live and breathe their phones these days as so aptly shown by the somewhat disturbing phone commercials that talk about how your phone is the first thing you see in the morning and the last thing you see before you go to sleep. Sad if true, but for many people I expect it is and business will want to and will HAVE to tap into that to compete.

  7. Addison Rickaby

    I think they should continue to be called smartphones, even as these phones evolve in time. In my opinion a smartphone is just a phone that offers the user with more features than just a phone. Even as technology progresses and phones are able to do more things, its still a smartphone. I consider Model T Ford a car, even though today’s cars are definitely more advanced. The definition of the word “smartphone” should just continue to evolve with the technology behind them.

  8. Kristin Q

    When the company I worked for switched from the older version of cellular telephones that would simply just call and text to blackberry’s (sometimes called “crackberry’s”) that you could get email, call, text, etc. there was some resistance and some acceptance and now I highly doubt you could get any of them to give u their “smartphone”. I think that this term will stick around for many years to come and that it is used to generalize the increasingly growing industry of cellular phones and their capabilities. Each individual phone is always named and that would be to hard for people to stay on top of therefore I think the term ‘smartphones’ will be the commonly accepted term with this type of M-commerce.
    Most days I don’t go anywhere without my phone and have it constantly with me throughout the day. It is a frustrating inconvienience if I forget it onthe counter or the battery dies. However did society function without smartphones? Somedays I wish I could just detach and I am usually only capapble of that on vacation where the cost of using my phone would be astronomical so it isn’t even considered. I think that there is also more stress in people’s lives today and the 24/7 workweek is in effect, people can’t disconnect from their work now because they have access to it anywhere anytime.

  9. Michelle Zeng

    I don’t think smartphones have deal sufficiently with the issues of M-commerce yet, but i am very optimistic about the future of M-commerce. The boarder of smartphone and portable computer becomes more and more indistinct. When a smart phone becomes more like a computer, the technology can solve many of the problems we are facing. For example, we can have a folderable lcd monitor for a phone for better output, using extenal keyboard or even a virtrual optical keyboard to improve input. Security is a not a long term issue, i believe in the near future, we can encrypt the data from a phone just like we encrypt the data on the wireless LAN.

    The bottle neck is bandwidth, how to maximize the capacity of the bandwidth to meet mobile user’s need is not easy. m-commerce requires fastter and more reliable network since we need to dealing with webpages with a lot images, more overheads for packets with encryption implemented, plus less patient users.

  10. brett s

    I dont think there is a true definition of smartphone as it is always changing. As technology changes and we continue to improve cell phones the definition will also change and “improve”. M commerce was developed as a result of e commerce and as long as our mobile devices offer us the ability to conduct transactions from our phones there will be the separation of the two because I believe that there will always be limited access to what we can do on our phones in comparison to what we can do on our PC’s at home.

  11. Mitch Stevenson

    i think that the name “smartphone” will be around indefinatly. The difficulty of the issue will be to classify what a smartphone actually is and what functions it possesses. As technology continues to become more advanced, smartphones will follow close at hand leading to a stricter classification of what a smartphone actually does, and at this point (if not already) these devices should be labeled as a computer. It is going to be interesting in the future in how smartphones are going to replace the computer, will computer’s be completely replaced by smartphones? leaving only supercomputers. Or will the computers still provide some type of value to consumers, sustaining the relationship as a must have in modern society?

  12. Brittany

    The meaning of smartphone and what it includes has changed in the past and will most likely continue to change in the future. Phone companies are always coming out with new and improved phones that offer more services and can do more than the previous model. Being a smartphone user myself, I can’t imagine life without it. With each new phone I use, there are more options available to me. The use of smartphones is growing personally and in businesses and will continue to grow in the future.

  13. Kayla D

    I think from now on mobile-computing will be huge for ‘smartphones’. I know that personally, I would have an issue with not having the mobile access that I have. People can become used to having the convienence of being able to access their email, the internet, etc. and I only see this becoming a larger market. Mobile phones have become computers in our hands more than actual phones. I think that unless you have family that you need to keep in contact with (that you don’t see on a regular basis in person) people use their phones minimally to place a call. Business people probably have a decent weight for phone calls and internet usage but I do believe that the internet usage will remain a primary function of the ‘smartphones’.

  14. Sarah Falco

    Smartphones have only been around a couple years now, and there are already new phone being created with new names such as: Android phones. I don’t think the term Smartphones will be around forever. I can’t imagine what technology will be like in a couple years; in my mind technology is already so advanced, yet I know there will always be some new technology. Smartphones have definitely made doing business easier, when businesses send e-mails to each other its almost as fast as calling the business these days. But I do not think that business transactions will be taken over by cell phones. There is still a need for computers and conferencing. Smartphones have definitely made things easier but I think as long as they stay small, I don’t think they will be the main source of e-commerce.

  15. Jvo

    We (North America) are already behind the Smartphone game. If you take a look at Asian countries (specifically South Korean and Japan) their mobile commerce is way far beyond what we have here. Almost all aspects of their lives can be controlled from a phone. Example would be that they simply scan their phone to buy groceries, train tickets, and even at vending machines. So simply carrying your phone instead of cash/cards would be sufficient. There is no doubt in my mind that m-commerce would be one the most dominate forces that will influence our lives in the future. Personally I wouldn’t mind just carrying a phone instead of a wallet for all my needs.

  16. Alejandra

    I think the word “smartphone” will be around for several of years but I do think that the word is too vague for the phones that are out there. Now a days every phone is able to browse the internet, receive and make calls and text messaging, I personal think, those are your regular phones. Smartphones are different they use iOS from Apple, Android from Google or the upcoming Windows Phone 7 from Microsoft like the articles mentions as well as GPS. The term smartphone isn’t too complicated to understand when you have a basic phone like I do. I do think that in the future there will only be smartphones since that is what the customer wants. People are emailing constantly for work, school, and various other situations. Smartphones are becoming a necessity but I do agree with others that in order to differentiate there should be some sort of term to distinguish. With the rise of apps in Iphones its competitors are introducing cell phones like it which in the future will need some other term than just smartphones. Perhaps phones like Iphone with its apps will be the new regular phone.

  17. Carlos.Z

    With the increasingly high-tech equipment development, both M-commerce and E-commerce are widely used in electronic business like smartphones firms. In this case, I think there is difference existing between business’s e-commerce and M-commerce model. M-commerce is more focus on wireless mobile device and while E-commerce mainly based on the platform of network. I believe new smartphones deal sufficiently with the issues of M-commerce. As we could use it to send and read email, access the internet with bandwidth, chatting online, and do some financial issues like acquire the stock information and so on. It could not only save a great deal of time to deal with some work via cell phones but it could also help individuals to manage various of documents in an effective way. I convinced M-commerce marketplace would have a better prospect.
    On the other hand, I personally believe mobile computing will tend to dominant the segment of e-commerce market in the future. As the mobile computing industry is growing quickly currently, and it has the potential to become more miniaturized and portable as well as it’s advanced powerful professional system.

  18. Debbie C.

    I don’t think that mobile commuting will be the dominant segment of e-commerce market until changes are made to the way that cellphone service is provided. There are issues with billing (unlimited access vs flat rate with a maximum amount of usable minutes) and coverage. In many areas of North America, especially outside of major metro areas, there is poor or no coverage. E-commerce is still a convienent and inexpensive way for most people to access markets not otherwise available to them. The main use for smart phones seems to be texting, emailing and scheduling.

  19. Georgina Pina

    M-commerce is becoming an emerging market for businesses to cover, given the constant launch of new phones, or its marketing name, Smartphone’s. Is not even surprising anymore, each month another technology company is launching in the market place, either the same device with some additional features, or the same device with different design and brand name.
    And even though, as the reading recalls, Smartphone’s exist since the 1990’s, they weren’t as accessible and available as they are now, and they were a luxury, whereas nowadays they have become a necessity.
    However, I don’t think a business E-commerce model should be the same as their M-commerce model, because these are still different markets, not everybody has involved in M-commerce and other haven’t even get involved with E-commerce yet, usually older generations. So I think both models have to be analysed and companies should create marketing and sales strategies for both of them, in order to keep up with technology and with consumer behaviour.
    As for bandwidth and security, I believe M-commerce faces the same challenges as E-commerce. Both need Internet connection, sharing of information such as personal data, and therefore, both of them can face the consumer’s lack of trust.

  20. Stephanie H

    The business’s of e-commerce and M-commerce will never be the same until the dominate electronic phase slows down and the service providers are able to make changes in the market. The new smartphones does deal sufficiently with the issues of M-commerce idea of input then generating output while maintaining some level of security. The process of the smartphones ability for its users to be able to transfer information with the touch of their cellular devices strongly suggest the issues of M-commerce although now that everything is being transfered over the internet the level of security has dropped because of hackers/&viruses. You never know fully know if information is being stolen or not. I do feel that mobile computing will be a dominant segment of e-commerce market in the future because I feel that everybody likes the idea of being able to travel while dealing with personal and business issues. Everybody likes to on the ball with new information therefore mobility has and will be a huge factor in the future.

  21. James

    Using e-commerce or m-commerce depends on the business and the owners preferences. So depending on the situation the they could be the same model. They are both commputer based, can have access the internet, make use of applications, make purchases with, and use to sell things with. But what if the owner isn’t comfortable with using cell phones, or any mobile device for business, what if they need a big screen to work with due to bad eyesight. There are many factors that could give cause for either argument so really it boils down to an opionion based on prefernce or need.

  22. Troy K (U of L)

    I don’t see why there is such a concern over a smart phone being called a smart phone. The technology is becoming more advanced than it was when it first appeared in the 90’s and it is capable of doing many new things but we still call a pc a pc and look how much they have changed in the past 20 years. If the the business model for M-commerce is capable of doing everything needed to do in E-commerce I don’t see why there should be a difference in the bussiness models. M-commerce was developed from e-commerce and as technology develops there is getting to be a smaller and smaller gap between the two. As mobile companies technology develops it will become more widely used. People are all about convenience. The more things that people can do sitting were they are and not have to go anywere the more that they will do. It is a growing market and becomming a more dominant part of e-commerce. It is a long way off to becoming the dominent segment but it is growing.

  23. Celest-

    I feel that with the increasing growth in technology, mobile computing will be the most dominant segment of e-commerce market in the future. Comparing mobile computing to the use of computers in the olden times, very few people knew how to use the computers. Currently, majority of the people who have access to them use them for the benefits that go along with their usage. Such is the future of mobile computing. That said, if the term “smartphone” is just but a marketing term, then it will be around for a long time depending on what kind of technology the person you are speaking to has had exposure to.

  24. Alyssa

    Personally when I hear smartphone I automatically think of an iphone or a blackberry. I think the word “smartphone” will continue to be said until something completely new and innovative has emerged onto the market. Although some of us still have the “oldschool” phones that you can only make calls or text from, almost everyone now a days has a phone with multiple different apps and functions and this is what I classify as a “smartphone”. I think that in the future there will only be smartphones since that is what everyone seems to want right now, but I also predict something highly more innovative will appear on the market and will change the face and even the name of “smartphones” once again.

  25. Kaleigh

    I think the mobile phone industry should continue to use the term “smartphone.” I really don’t understand why they are so concerned about the definition. The definition will change as technology progresses and cellphone become more advanced. In my opinion, a smartphone is a device that allows the user to place calls, and it also has features that you would find on a personal digital assistant (PDA) or a computer. A smartphone is usually defined by its technological features. These technological features include: operating system, software, web access, QWERTY keyboard and messaging (either e-mail or text messaging) capabilities. I think the term “smartphone” will be around for a while.

  26. Jessy Gust

    “Finally, there are plenty of people who are fed up with this linguistic mess and want to bail on the word “smartphone” for once and for all.”
    I agree with some of the comments from above, technology is moving at such a rapid pace, that every phone is concidered “smart” in my mind. In the last two decades alone we have seen the birth of a cell phone, to now we have the Iphone 4 which has video conference? We ARE in the future, and if that is not a “smartphone”, then I don’t know what is!

    I think that the term “smartphone” does not really matter or have relevance, because in a couple months there will be new versions and new phones to replace the last version. It is pretty much impossible to stay on top of the game of new phones and new gadgets.

  27. Dustin Lehmann

    I feel that smartphones are here to stay and that there use in peoples’ everyday life is going to increase as well. I thought i had a smartphone 5yrs ago when i could text/take pics/send pics and listen to music on my phone. My new phone can do all of the above as well as send/recieve email, search the web, go to websites, edit my schoolwork ect. all without going onto an actually computer. Many of these things i can do while i’m on the road.This is why i feel that smartphones are just in the begining stages of there use and need

  28. Anita Hsieh

    A business’s ecommerce model cannot be the same as their m commerce model because these models address different aspects of business. Ecommerce focuses on transaction of goods and services and money between internal and external stakeholders, while m-commerce encompasses more on the ease of exchange of information which may lead to the exchange of goods and services. Therefore a business should not confuse the two models and create just one to satisfy their ecommerce and m-commerce needs.
    Although the new smartphones currently the new sophisticated multitasking gadgets that drive m-commerce, there are constantly changing benchmarks that quickly render the specifications of any smartphone obsolete. As technology evolves to address old problems such as security, user friendliness and network speed; they become expected norms. The public does not concern themselves with these issues anymore because the solutions are expected, integrated into our homes and businesses. The only new problems really concerning smart phones are health and sociological issues, such as quality of life, which I predict will only become worst as the technology in smart phones become more refined.
    I do feel that mobile computing will a dominant segment of e-commerce in the future. Companies that do not have mobile friendly versions of their website should have one, since on-the-go professionals want to find their answers without wading through complicated web pages. If a company can focus on e commerce, keeping mobile users in mind, they will not lose out on potential tech savvy customers.

  29. Marcel Ter Denge

    I believe that in some businesses the e-commerce model can be almost the same as the m-commerce model, but this isn’t the case for all. I personally bought a smartphone over the summer and I love it, it’s like having a small computer in my pocket. I didn’t know what the big deal was about smartphones until I had one. I can check my email, facebook, weather, look up videos, surf the web, and look up places on maps at any time without having a Wi-Fi connection. There are still certain situations where my laptop is the better tool for the job, but there aren’t many times that this is the case. I believe that this is also the case for many businesses, and I think that m-commerce will become more popular in the future as technologies continue to grow and people become more advanced at using them.

  30. Breann L

    I think that the term ‘smartphone’ will continue to be used to reflect the newest technology involved with a mobile phone. As we all know technology is always changing and as smartphones change the term smartphone will change with it to include the new developements in mobile technology. I think that mobile computing will grow to become a part of the marketplace in ecommerce. Mobile phones allow users to access banking, shopping, games etc. anytime anywhere. Now days because you dont have to be at a computer to access these things the convenience and accessibility are increased, two things that appeal to many consumers. For example, I dont have wireless at my house but because my ‘smartphone’ has my email account and internet I can still access many things without needing to use the internet at home.

  31. Katie Sparling

    The use (or uses for that matter) of the phone have become something beyond what they were originally meant to do-make and receive phone calls. Businesses today are relying more on their mobile phones than ever, and no, they are not using them simply for phone calls. Emails, access to the internet, conference calling, gps to meeting locations etc are some of the examples that are being used in everyday business. The phone is one of the most needed devices for almost anyone to survive on in the business world. I know I personally panic when I dont know where my phone is, I can only imagine how a business manager would feel. At the end of the day, a phone is stil a phone, who cares what one calls it.

  32. Yuang

    Yes i do feel that mobile computing will be dominant segment of e-commerce market in the future, as we can see now that with wireless one can excess internet anywhere, ether with a smartphone or laptop and can sheck their bank account and make some payment, also with excess to internet through mobile computing someone can order anything from anywhere they are. A year ago I heard from someone that there will be a technology soon where one could place money on a cellphone or load his or her mobile phone account with amount of money and can used these money on any commerce machine by calling the machine and make payment of what he or her want to purchase. So the mobile computing like used the smartphone to do commerce, purchasing, order and payment will be so dominant in the future, since there will be no one want to go and line up in the bank or no one will have time to go to the bank.

  33. Rashida Buchanan

    A smart phone in my opinion is a phone that is the most advanced in its computing abilities than the average phone on the market. It has to be easily mobile and have advanced connectivity. A smartphone should allow people to access the internet and run several different applications at any time. This device helps e-commerce immensely because now people are able to connect, surf and buy items more easily than ever before. Websites such as Ebay, Google and Facebook will see much higher user activity when people are able to access it whenever and wherever they want. When user rates go up, profits go up with it.

  34. Jobbie C.

    I think M-commerce is a form of E-commerce, the only difference is that people can access internet to do online shopping on their mobiles. Most of the cell phones have 3G internet data plan. As the teachnology advancement, the bandwidth and security issues of accessing the internet on smartphones will soon be more faster and better. Smartphone companies would develop the latest technology on smartphones in order to stand out from the competitors. I think the mobile computing would be a dominant segment of E-commerce in the futrue, because users can access the internet to do online shopping more handy.

  35. Ling H

    I don’t have a cell phone, but I hear lots of good comments about the iPhone. People can go on online to check their e-mail, bank account and their stocks at anytime and anywhere.It is amazing how much an iPhone can do with its small size. Mobile phones are getting better and cheaper; more people can afford to have one. I think the M-commerce will dominant the E-commerce because of it’s convenience and affordability. I know what I’m going to wish for Christmas.

  36. Shawn Nelson

    I have recently purchased the Iphone 4. Shockingly I can talk in remote locations that my old phone and colleagues phone don’t even dream of reaching. The technology is so advanced that it is hard to stay up to date with it. There are however some problems with my iphone. The mute button always presses because the phone won’t sleep while im talking. Other blogs talk about this issue. Also my visual voicemail will not work either. So I wait patiently for apple to fix them and if not I will not be happy with my phone. The mute button has pressed about 8 times in call and it is annoying.

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