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Networked Society — WTF ?

Prerequisites (June 2015⇒):

Welcome to technologies trend tracking for 2015⇒2019 !!! v0.7
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Networked Society—WTF ??? v0.5
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[v0.5 yet] Networked Society? It is nothing new. As this is a concept which first appeared on the scene of IT strategies on July 25, 2000 — i.e. not less than 15 years ago, with the launch of the Microsoft .NET initiative. (Watch the video on below left, as the proof point.) OR NOT? A fictitious example from June, 2014 given by a Gartner analyst on “what a digital business might look like“. (Watch the video on below right, as the proof point.)

Regarding the first video you may want to learn everything which is in The cloud experience vision of .NET by Microsoft 12 years ago and its delivery now with Windows Azure, Windows 8/RT, Windows Phone, iOS and Android among others post of mine dated Sept 16, 2012 – Sept 11, 2013. Regarding the second video you may want to understand what is in this Ericsson Industry Watch – Anything is possible in the Networked Society video from January 8, 2015: with the following promise in the very end  

Drone Boss 3000. Coming soon? Keep an eye on the future of your industry  

Intrigued? Then watch the first video in their “Networked Society” playlist from February 21, 2014 (on the left), and the current last one from March 27, 2015 (on the right):

Want more? I will embed the whole playlist in the very end, but since it is huge—with not less than 131 videos—I will select just 6 additional ones which in my view are conveying best the whole concept of the Networked Society as it is now:

Well, you may now agree with me that Ericsson is indeed a more likely industry stronghold to lead us into the Networked Society than Microsoft has ever been.

Before continue along the Ericsson line, however, you may be tempted to learn about this whole concept from big IT analyst companies like Gartner and Forrester. After all, they are the major advisors to the CIOs, and they’ve doing that for decades now. So let’s do that now, i.e. listen to them: Gartner delivered on its annual Catalyst Conference 2014 an opening keynote about Architecting the Digital Business: Scaling and Securing Mobility, Cloud and Data. One of the keynote speakers was their major cloud expert, Drue Reeves. The very essence of this whole keynote was just Drue’s part for me, and the most effective slice of it has fortunately been published as a YouTube extract (otherwise everything is to be paid, even the on demand video): Drue is ending his brief intro into the Networked Society, pardon “digital industrial economy” with the following words to repeat here with emphasis:

Welcome to the digital industrial economy where everyone and everything is connected to the Internet and not merely for the purposes of communicating but for the purposes of enriching our lives and for saving us the thing that we find truly valuable. Time — because if you can save people time or you can create things that [represent] value—[to them i.e.] they’re willing to pay for—you can shake markets and you can revolutionize industries.

That’s it. Then add to that what Drue’s colleague, Kyle Hilgendorf added to that in his Cloud Services: The Foundation for the Digital Business session, from which I can include (fortunately again) this essential extract: I.e. a kind of interpretation of the Networked Society, pardon “digital industrial economy” in terms understandable for CIOs. That’s it (again).

The imperative for the whole IT profession (now considered rather ICT profession) with this whole phenomenon moving upon us should be more than clear now.

But once the phenomenon is named “digital industrial economy”—which is a term better understood in the IT community—how business people, who are the stakeholders of IT, how those people are ready to move along? Fortunately there is another brief video shedding light into that. This time from Forrester Research (a Gartner competitor). Sharyn Leaver, VP, Group Director explains that today’s business environment has radically changed and the need to become a truly digital business is more important than ever The Digital Business Imperative video above emphasizes the following findings:

In a recent survey that we did at both technology and business leaders ninety-three percent indicated that they believe their businesses will be affected or disrupted by digital over the course of 2040. So we get it. Digital is important. We have to tackle it.

The more interesting statistic is that of those same survey respondents only 15 percent believe that they have the skills and capability to actually execute on a truly digital strategy. …

Why is it that only 15 percent believe that we have the skills and capabilities to pull this off? So we’ve thought about this a bit and then have done a lot of research to try and figure it out. I would contend that it really comes down to one particular reason which is:

The business environment we live in today is radically different than it was even two to three years ago.

And this difference is what Forrester is touting again and again for its customers as being their strategic advisor. In fact they are talking about disruption, and not simply disruption but digital disruption, or even more “the disruption of the disruption“. Just listen to their Vice President and Principal Analyst, James McQuivey, who is also the author of the 2013 book, “Digital Disruption” talking to the audience of The Next Web 2014:

Digital disruption is already happening all around us. Consumers have embraced it, digital startups have joined them, and every business from banking to food production is learning how to let digital drive deeper customer relationships and deliver new product experiences. But the full effect of this disruption has just begun to reveal itself. The “next” disruption will affect every waking, and sleeping, moment of our lives. In this session, James McQuivey, Ph.D., and author of the book Digital Disruption will suggest ways to prevision that next disruption and align your organisation to be a part of it.

If you happen to be familiar with the concept of the “barrier to entry” (if not then check with the wikipedia article I’ve linked behind the term) then you will immediately understand the massive threat to businesses of all kind posed by the emerging Networked Society, pardon digital economy. Those barriers are going to be lowered to such a degree as never before in the history of computerisation. Sure, as we will arrive to a “networked society” which is significantly more advanced in its capabilities than the already familiar to everybody “computerised society”. This latter kind of society was the result of the technology advancements of the 2nd half of the 20th century, while the kind of society we are talking about here is under formation of technology advancements of the 1st half of the 21st century. And from all that the mobile Internet is the current disruptor (but more to come the technology efforts under Networked Society umbrella).

No wonder that in the more practical terms Forrester’s Ted Schadler, VP and Principal Analyst was talking in 2014 about Mobile Is The Catalyst For The Digital Business Transformation

Mind You! The above mobility talk is about the current 3G to 4G type (“Mobile Internet (Aug’11)“) networks. Meanwhile for the Networked Society the mobile network, The Network is much much more. Read urgently my 5G 2015⇒2019 – Incremental Evolutionary Development and Standardization of 5G Technologies for the New Era of Wireless Internet of the 2020’s and 2030’s page which is providing an Outlook as of January 1, 2015.

To continue with this “no wonder” line of thought we come back to Gartner. Below there are 6 videos published by this leading IT strategy advisor company to show what kind  of dilemmas they are currently in, even inside (no wonder what kind of mental difficulties their customers are in):

What is the Digital Business: What Characterizes a Digital Business:
Who are the [Business] Leaders in Digital Business: Boosting Workforce Effectiveness with a Digital Workplace:
What Does Digital Business Mean To CIOs — Gartner: IoT under the CIO operation and control — Microsoft:

With all that confusion it’s time to watch 3 very brief video excerpts from John Rossman’s presentation about digital disruption, a 4th one which is 30 minutes long but it is about The Amazon Way, then 2 others expanding on that, one briefly and the other deeply. Rossman is from Alvarez & Marsal. Before joining A&M, he was Director of Enterprise Services at Amazon.com, managing worldwide services to enterprise clients such as Target.com, Toys R Us, Sears.ca, Marks and Spencer and the National Basketball Association (NBA).

Digital Disruption: Why the Urgency? Digital Disruption: Invent and Simplify
Digital Disruption: Are You A Platform? Digital Disruption: Lessons Learned from “The Amazon Way” (30 min.)
Driving Innovation and Growth in Business Today via Digital Disruption Leadership and Tactics for Creating Digital Disruption (72 minutes)

Leadership and Tactics for Creating Digital Disruption (72 minutes): PARC Forum Presents: Leveraging the leadership principles of Amazon.com, understand the perspective, culture, and tactics which leaders can borrow to evaluate and execute in the times of disruption. Mr. Rossman launched and scaled the third party selling business at Amazon (over 40% of all orders today) and managed the enterprise services business at Amazon. Since Amazon, Mr. Rossman has been advising companies across multiple industries including technology, social sector, retail and B2B services on disruptive business models and leadership to make them happen. This presentation will leave open plenty of time for open discussion. His recent book, “The Amazon Way: 14 Leadership Principles of the World’s Most Disruptive Company” is noted for its practical insider understanding that is helpful for all leaders. John is a Managing Director with Alvarez & Marsal Business Consulting. He specializes in multi-channel strategy, technology strategy and platform enablement in multiple industries including retail, service and public sector clients. Prior to joining A&M, Mr. Rossman was Director of Enterprise Services at Amazon.com, responsible for the development of the Merchants @ program, one of the largest B2B networks with thousands of sellers offering products in numerous categories. John is the author of The Amazon Way: 14 Leadership Principles of the World’s Most Disruptive Company, and is renowned expert on digital disruption and assisting his clients build and execute new business models.

Returning now to the IT strategies here are what we should take note of:

  1. Peter Sondergaard, May 21, 2015: Bimodal IT What CIOS Need To Know 

  2. Then here is the latest, May 2015 set of full messages from Gartner: Businesses heading towards point of digital inflexion (Tech Channel MEA, June 6, 2015)

The transformation has started and businesses are moving towards a platform of digital convergence including people, processes, devices. Gartner’s Peter Sondergaard explains more.

Note that when you go to the  Businesses heading towards point of digital inflexion (Tech Channel MEA, June 6, 2015) you will find a complete report on Peter Sondergaard discusses digital transformation, regional impact at Gartner Symposium Dubai 2015 including the transcripts of what Sondergaard was delivering in each video part embedded there. So it is worth to check with.

Now it’s time to move from the IT-focussed world to the Telco-focussed one:

First and foremost here is the Industry Transformation Keynote Panel @ TM Forum Live! 2015 (June 1-4, 2015, Nice, France) with 3 great people representing the 3 essential sides of the digital transformation: 

  • End customerKlas Bendrik, CIO, Volvo Car Group speaking on behalf of the whole automotive industry, in which the Volvo Car Group (not to be confused by “other Volvos”) is the most hopefull “rising star” since it has been taken over by the Chinese  Zhejiang Geely Holding Group (simply Geely) in 2010 from Ford (which was just “robbing” them)
  • Telco solutions supplierUlf Ewaldsson, Senior Vice President and Group CTO, Ericsson, well representing the views of the whole telco supplier industry, as Ericsson is the #1 there
  • TelcoJulie Woods-Moss, Chief Marketing Officer of Tata Communications Ltd, and CEO of its NextGen Business, thus having the best view over the whole global telecommunications sector by the very fact that it is “a leading provider of wholesale long distance Global Voice Solutions & Global Enterprise Data Solutions” and “over 24% of the world’s internet routes travel over Tata Communications’ network, which is the largest wholly-owned subsea cable network in the world.” (see also the Tata Communications: Leading the Next Generation Ethernet Evolution with Innovation for its NextGen efforts)

Let’s summarize first the panelists’ answers to the first question as:

The biggest opportunities for your business:

  • Volvo: … Digitalisation is happening here and right now …
  • Ericsson: We started 5 years ago. Now the Networked Society is here. … [Now] we have to live up to [our] promise. … We are well in the Networked Society. …
  • Tata Communications: … Touch communications [i.e. communications at “internet touch points”] and B2B is here. … [but] Less than 10% of the revenue in the sector is coming from digitalisation. … [the biggest opportunity is the] digitalisation of all of our [internet] touch points. …

We [i.e. Tata Communications] see digital, mobile, social, BIG data and cloud all together … unlike digitisation in silos prevalent [currently] in the whole sector …

Barriers of entry [into any industry] becoming nil [as the result of that]. …


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