I recently read an article in USA Today about how mobile-linked device connectivity is going to exceed that of home broadband. In his article entitled “Mobile Users Cast A Wilder Internet”, Mike Snider reports:
This year, consumer spending on Internet-connected smartphones, tablets and other devices will surpass home broadband service fees for the first, according to PriceWaterhouseCoopers’ “Entertainment & Media Outlook 2013-2017″ report. In four years, nearly 286.7 million in the U.S., or 87% of the population, will have mobile internet devices; about 85% of homes will have broadband.
Mobile Internet access spending will to $54 Billion in the U.S. this year year, compared with $49.6 billion in home internet spending…….In 2012, home internet spending ($46.5 billion) slightly out paced mobile ($44.5 billion).
Did you catch that?
Once I got past the term “billion”…with a B… I was struck by the rate of change from 2012 to 2013 for mobile internet access. It is up almost 25%. Who would have thought 10-15 years ago that mobile internet access was going to exceed the “secure and reliable” home…wired…internet service. The speed of change and transformation in our culture is staggering. 20 years ago, there were not smartphones. Now they make up an industry where just the internet component of these devices will generate over $54 Billion annually.
So what implications should we be cognizant of as it relates to our churches, ministries and culture?
1. Technology is changing everything. Embrace it.
2. People are going mobile with almost all computing, communication and social media. Join the movement.
3. The rate of change is staggering. Don’t get overwhelmed by the speed of change…but don’t be left behind.
4. If you are functioning in a world of paper bulletins, AM radio broadcasts, printed announcements, paper newsletter, etc., - wake up and smell the megabytes.
5. Your congregation, especially those under 35 (although I am a huge fan of the technology changes and I am a “little” north of that age) are accustomed to using technology at work, at home, in their cars, with friends and in virtually every aspect of life…they will expect their church to do the same.
6. You can have more reach and more impact by incorporating technology into your strategies.
7. Quality apps, websites, online-giving options, Facebook Pages, Twitter accounts, podcasts and Instagram are what is the rule for communication and accessibility, not the exception.
Welcome to the future, which is actually the current paradigm.