3 September 2012
My travels this summer took me to some wonderful and beautiful parts of the world, some a little more remote than others and at all times away from my laptop. When in one of the more remote locations I had limited access to electricity and I was without power to charge my smartphone for some time. It was during these ‘outages’ that I realised just how reliant I have become on my phone. I was thinking about what I actually do on my phone; E-mail, SMS, messaging, social media, store my music, my video content, check weather forecasts, tell the time, run my calendar, pass the time with games, read the news… the list goes on, I even make the odd phone call on it!
It was then I thought to myself that I run my entire life from pretty much one device. For some of the functions such as e-mail and viewing content it is a secondary device but it also adds the value of convenience which makes up for what you lose in functionality. This goes back to some of the points I have been trying to get across for the past few months in my blog and that is about the perception of value and the benefit I think it can add to discussions on public policy, not just in the telecoms sector but across many fields.
When considering the benefit from a public policy priority and when setting the agenda for decisions, currently, not enough focus is placed on utility and value. Take for example my case, in a very rural region I took most value from not having a particularly high speed connection but from being connected at a useful speed and being able to function. This is not to say that rural locations should receive lesser levels of service, simply that utility could affect technology choice. I believe individualisation is the key when looking at utility but I also believe it could be aggregated to provide much clearer data and lead to much more efficient decisions being made.
I will be exploring this idea hopefully in some more detail over the coming weeks and months. I would like to try and see where you truly get value from your devices, connections and services? Can it lead to a more detailed and better informed decision making process?