Wireless ecommerce

From: hal@finney.org
Date: Thu May 25 2000 - 10:58:25 MDT

Wireless ecommerce is the big buzzword today. There are all kinds of
trade shows, conferences, startups and press releases on the subject.
This is said to be the next big thing, with huge rates of growth and
massive amounts of business coming soon.

I know a lot of us spend time thinking about the future. Can someone
explain to me what forms wireless ecommerce might take, on a grand scale?

I try to envision shopping on my cell phone or wireless PDA, and it
doesn't sound very attractive. Could this really take over a significant
fraction of the purchases I make today? Presently I buy some things
in stores, and some things online, but I don't very often find myself
walking around and wanting to buy something online.

Adding to that the fact that mobile platforms have to be compact, and
therefore the display area is limited, the shopping experience can't
provide much in the way of quality and pleasure. Looking at the world
through a window the size of a deck of cards is not going to be an ideal
way to shop for goods, it seems to me.

What am I missing here? Is it all hype? Plenty of companies are putting
big bucks into it. Or is the growth mostly expected in the business
arena, where a mobile sales force needs access to real time connectivity
to the corporate net?


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