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Internet Summit 10: The Future of Online

By: 17 November 2010

Internet Summit

Content remains king on the Internet mainly because there are more ways to produce, connect and interact with content than ever before. According to Rod Smith of IBM, “there are more ways to dig into content than ever before, but it also produces more targeted ways for advertisers to interact with the audiences they are seeking.”

While content is king, the way it is presented online differs depending upon the online medium used. Joe Gregorio of Google points out that “Twitter and blogging have different voices and and different timeframes so communication has to be different. Quick updates versus longer tail content that can be searched have very different purposes.”

Now we are seeing content being merged with local commerce and the social graph in more interesting mash-ups. “Consumer commerce is moving into virtual boutiques where the average consumer can set up shop and sell merchandise and connect their social network to their store, Gregorio says. “Tying into localized information and comments are the keys to the success of this area.”

When asked where the online play will be over the next one to two years, the clear answer was the smartphone. Why? According to Bob Young of LuLu, “we have not even reached the 50 percent mark of penetration and the current demand for content and usage indicates this market will continue to rise as more smart handsets come onto the market.”

The only restriction for the smartphone growth is the data pipeline. IBM’s Smith points out: “Pipes are the issue of what will be possible versus what people want to access. This is causing poor customer experiences. Netflix, Hulu and other major content producers are pushing the networks to do a better job.”

Content will remain king as it drives searches, engagement and eyeballs, meaning content will remain the center of the Web future. Innovation continues to drive online, and the hope is that the data pipes will keep up to help fulfill the consumer promises media companies and online publishers are making.



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