Whether consciously or not, most of us subscribe to a PC-centric view of the Internet, in which everything revolves around content that is created or accessed via a PC or Mac. However, that is about to change as mobile increasingly becomes the new paradigm for both creating and consuming content. Quite simply, the Web is about to experiencea Copernican moment.Before Copernicus, it was widely believed that everything – including the Sun – revolved around the Earth, rather than the Earth revolving around the Sun. In the same way, it might be quaint one day to believe that everything once revolved around the PC rather than the mobile device.
The easiest way to understand this Copernican moment is to understand the extent to which mobile is becoming the new paradigm for the way we use the Internet. In terms of hours of usage, total content consumed and amount of data created,2010 was the year of the mobile device. Keep in mind that the average teen now sends more than 3000 text messages each month! And that trend is only accelerating in 2011 as social networking rapidly migrates to the mobile device. Already, there are already 200 million mobile Facebook users and 5 million Foursquare users. Think about the last time you used Facebook – did you use a PC or did you simply check the Facebook app on your smart phone?
Of course, this push towards a Mobile-Centric Web started with the app-ification of just about everything. It’s almost a cliché to mention how many apps have been downloaded via Apple, Android or BlackBerry. It’s a big number (5 billion apps!) and getting bigger. Apps solved the fundamental problem of mobile devices – the terrible browsing experience resulting from haphazard wireless connections, combined with a tiny screen that could only display a small amount of content at one time. Apps standardized the Web browsing process and re-framed the web in terms of content that could be viewed and created using a mobile device.