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December 16, 2014

Where Can We Expect Messaging to Go in 2020?

Christina Warren Zula Summit

There are many different philosophies about where the dynamic mobile space is headed. Christina Warren, Senior Tech Analyst of Mashable, discussed her views in the 2014 Zula Summit, and left the audience wanting more.

Christina started off by saying that there are lots of issues that need to be addressed in the messaging space. First of all, what does messaging look like? There are many comparisons such as mobile versus web, and audio versus video.

Mobile vs. Web

To get a better understanding of where we are now and where we’re headed, we first have to take a step back. Where was messaging 5 years ago? You have to look back to notice what has changed. Messaging now is similar in a lot of ways, and different in other. In the case of mobile versus web, mobile stands out for a few reasons. Mobile apps develop and update faster than desktop apps. It was previously fantastic for a lot to take place in web browsers, but that is now expected in mobile apps.

Many people that pushed for app momentum ended up building more superior web apps, such as Facebook and LinkedIn. Web slowly became a language of its own. In 5 years, it won’t be web versus mobile, it may be both in one.

Emerging Marketing and Cultural Shifts

Messaging has accelerated in the last 5 years, especially in emerging markets. When predicting the future in emerging marketings, it’s safe to assume that the tech we are all using today will be the baseline of what everyone uses around the world regardless of their income.

We have been communicating through mobile apps, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have parts of the web seeding into it. Emojis (as a way of communication) have become huge across the world. It’s interesting how we returned to communicating with pictures, it’s more fluid to have a convo with emoji than typing things out.

In the latest cultural shift, the device people are central to is their smartphone. When most people go online for the first time, they are doing so through their smartphones. However, the processors can’t get any more faster and screens can’t get any thinner, so we may get back to using larger devices to meet our needs.

Speech Recognition and Wearables

In the last 5 years, speech recognition has gotten very good. This has been commercialized by Siri. Speech recognition has gotten faster, and is available in multiple languages. We can expect improvements in terms of more languages and recognizing speech impediments. These improvements will have to be low power and still ensure high battery life for the phone.

Wearable technology will also play a big role in the way we give and receive communication. People at work already expect you to always be available and connected. You’re expected to respond to messages if you’re not doing something else, or at least acknowledge that the message has been seen.

Audio vs. Video

In audio versus video, video might change the least. This is because have concerns over battery life, and cloud storage. The amount of space high resolution videos take up is increasing. All content may not be 4K in the next 5 years because the structure isn’t presently set up to accommodate. It will be interesting to see more video messaging. Many people mostly communicate using video chat services such as Facetime, so that may just be the default way that future generations communicate with one another.


Watch the vid below to learn more about where we can expect messaging to go in 2020 from Christina Warren.