IBM Bets Mobile Will Be Big

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IBM is betting that mobile communications is going to grow and grow, and it’s betting in a big way – $100 million, to be exact. That’s how much it’s investing over the next five years in research in mobile communications.

That’s aimed at those who will use their mobile phone to go online, rather than a computer. The company own Institute for Business Value has predicted that the number of mobile users will rise by 191% between 2006 and 2011 to reach roughly one billion users. It’s worth recalling that although computers seem ubiquitous, 83% of the world’s population don’t own one.

One focus will be on emerging markets like China and India, where there’s already a pilot program to allow consumers and small business owners find and share internet information via their cell phones. Since users speak into their phones to obtain content, smartphones aren’t even needed.

IBM’s Dr Guruduth Banavar said:

"Mobile devices are gradually becoming ubiquitous and helping us transcend many boundaries."

"With high penetration, simple user interface, and significant cost advantage for end users, mobile telephony holds the future of communication and exchange of information."