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Executive Report - By Thomas Baekdal - November 2011

The Real Mobile Shift - For Publishers

The mobile shift is a verb. It is not a thing or a device. It is an action, a state of mind, and a feeling. That feeling is freedom. Freedom to do whatever you want, whenever and however you want.

Mobile. Everyone is talking about it and all the trends tell the same story. That story is that mobile is the way of the future whether we like it or not. But the mobile trend is not what you think it is. It is not about apps, nor is it about Android or the iPhone.

This guide will help you understand what the real mobile shift is all about. There are two articles. This one is targeted at publishers, and another (coming next week) is targeting brands.

I will not tell you about all the fancy numbers. I will not tell you that more people use Facebook and Twitter via mobiles than desktops, I will not tell you that QR code use has exploded by 1200%, and I will not tell you how many iPhones Apple has sold. That's because all those numbers are meaningless.

Many people believe that the image below is what mobile is all about, the smartphone and the tablet. Publishers believe that "to be mobile" you need to create a mobile site that fits the smaller screen...and, if you are really fancy, your own branded app.

It is true that most of the things we do on a smartphone and a tablet are mobile, but this is not what it is all about.

On the other hand, many people would say that this Dell desktop computer is *not* mobile. It's a desktop computer, how can that be mobile? But some of the things you do on a desktop are actually mobile. You can use a desktop computer to buy things without having to go to a physical store.

And almost everyone will tell you that this, the printed magazine is absolutely *not* mobile. But it is. You can read it anywhere, at anytime.

You see the mobile shift is a verb. It is not a thing or a device. It is an action, a state of mind, and a feeling. That feeling is freedom. Freedom to do whatever you want, whenever and however you want.

It is a combination of freedom of choice, freedom of time and freedom of place.

But more importantly, it is about being able to do all those things, without the need to plan ahead.

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What is Baekdal?

Baekdal is a magazine for media professionals, focusing on media analysis, trends, patterns, strategy, journalistic focus, and newsroom optimization. Since 2010, it has helped publishers in more than 40 countries, including big and small publishers like Condé Nast, Bonnier, Schibsted, NRC, and others, as well as companies like Google and Microsoft.

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Thomas Baekdal

Founder, media analyst, author, and publisher. Follow on Twitter

"Thomas Baekdal is one of Scandinavia's most sought-after experts in the digitization of media companies. He has made ​​himself known for his analysis of how digitization has changed the way we consume media."
Swedish business magazine, Resumé


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