From smart meters and smarter street lights to distance learning apps and even implanted medical devices, the power and potential of mobile innovation is all around us, and US innovation increasingly centers around mobile.
Names like Jobs, Gates and Zuckerberg require no explanation and have become synonymous with American entrepreneurialism and progress in the digital age. Just six years ago, there was no iPhone or Android. Four years ago, a tablet was a relic from the Stone Age. Today, a majority of Americans wield a smartphone and one-third of us have added a tablet.
Already, there are more mobile devices than people in the world, and Americans spend nearly two and a half hours each day interacting with wireless devices. And that doesn’t include the 24 minutes daily we spend engaged in the distinctly retro activity of talking on the phone.
Add to this super-usage the recent projection that 99% of products that will ultimately connect to the Internet—from clothes to text books to refrigerators—have yet to do so, and it’s no surprise that data traffic on mobile networks is expected to grow 700-fold from 2007 to 2017.
Powering all that growth is possibility—a world of entrepreneurs working in garages, WiFi cafes and university campuses—who are busy creating the next step forward—from pioneering applications and devices to services that are transforming our nation’s health, education, civic engagement and economy and making lasting and positive differences in our communities.
It all begs the never-ending question: What’s next? To help find some answers, Mobile Future has launched The Mobileys, a new national competition to spotlight and support early-stage wireless apps, services and/or products that make the world a better place.
Winners will have more than bragging rights. First prize is $10,000, and the total purse for the contest is $20,000. We want to elevate and celebrate the next wave of big ideas and the visionaries behind them who will power the next wave of mobile progress.
Applications are welcome through the October 21, 2013 deadline.
It’s clear that mobile innovation is bringing change at a blistering pace. We need to continue to encourage the entrepreneurial spirit and technological vision that applies all this potential to improving the world around us. So what will be the next new things? That’s an open question, and we’re excited see the next generation of answers.