The digital economy could also be called “the second machine age. ” That’s the term used by MIT professors Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson. They say the first phase of the second machine age began in the mid-1990s when digital technologies started taking over routine tasks done by humans.
Our model for connecting people — founded on the belief that internet is necessary, but insufficient — has three parts. Visionary company Harley-Davidson is at the forefront of the digital economy with its customer-centric focus and customized motorcycle configurations. In Harley-Davidson’s manufacturing facility, every machine is a connected device, and every variable is continuously measured and analyzed. The company can tell exactly how long it will take to install every component on a motorcycle, and the system alerts floor managers about issues at the individual component level. In this way, Harley-Davidson can build 1, 700 bike variations on one production line and ship a customized bike approximately every 90 seconds. There are numerous books, articles and other sources of information that provide an understanding of the new digital technologies transforming the global economy.
The blending of the physical and digital world brings every asset into a digital domain where applications dominate. In the sharing economy, the most potent distribution concept is peer-to-peer distribution. Players such as Airbnb, Uber, Zipcar, and Lending Club are disrupting the hotel, taxi, auto rental, and banking industries, respectively. They provide customers easy access to the products and services not owned by them but by other customers. The rise of 3-D printing will spur this peer-to-peer distribution even more in the near future. Imagine customers wanting a product and in a matter of minutes receiving the product printed in front of them. In a connected world, customers demand access to products and services almost instantly, which can only be served with their peers in close proximity.
Now we are in the second phase, in which computers can do non-routine work and technologies once thought of as science fiction, such as driverless cars and artificial intelligence, are real. As sensor prices continue to drop, we are on the crossover of an era where everything can be connected – business, people, technology, systems and processes – to each other.
Venture capital is designed to manage these sorts of J-curves; the balance sheets of publicly held enterprises are not. This creates the crisis of prioritization I have been blogging about for some time, the one addressed by the frameworks in Zone to Win, the one I will spare you from rehashing yet again here. Lacking such access, enterprises can still leverage a digital transformation, but their goal is a different one. Instead of enabling a new digital business model, it is to modernize an established industrial business model. These efforts are well under way in many industries, including mobile apps for traditional banking, traditional transportation, traditional home automation, and the like. Applying AI to customer logs in a traditional CRM system will improve its performance dramatically, as will applying it to supply chain information in your ERP. Blockchain technology will likely revolutionize supply chains that must authenticate quality and integrity, in sectors like health care, pharmaceuticals, collectibles, and the like.
In the digital economy, customers are now facilitated and empowered to evaluate and even scrutinize any company’s brand-positioning promise. With this transparency brands can no longer make false, unverifiable promises. Companies can position themselves as anything, but unless there is essentially a community-driven consensus the positioning amounts to nothing more than corporate posturing.
This stands in direct contrast to next-generation digital business models, regardless of whether they are funded by venture capital or as R&D within established enterprises. These models can give away industrial infrastructure because they can monetize data with an asterisk. The challenge, of course, is that these new models consume a lot of up-front investment before they generate material returns.
Latin America is anticipated to spend 69. eight percent from the digital advertisement budget on mobile in 2020, according to eMarketer. A new market is being created, with ads designed specifically for smartphones and tablets. At EveryoneOn, we believe that by connecting people to the internet, we create better social and economic opportunity for all. Since 2012, we have connected over 500, 000 people in 48 states and have a goal of connecting 1 million people by the end of 2020.