As 2011 kicks in, it becomes inevitable that the previous year will be remembered for a few key moments, and that those moments will be disputed by many! For some, 2010 will be remembered for the launch of the iPad and for others the rise of Google’s Android.

Sifting through the hype surrounding various predictions for the year ahead, I’ve pulled together a quick overview of what the mobile industry is saying, with the top six trends for 2011.

  1.  Tablets: the iPad’s entry into the technology market seems to only have been the beginning, as most media outlets are predicting its rise to domination in 2011 and for others to follow suit. Both enterprises and app developers alike need to take heed, and be prepared for this predicted rise in adoption.
  2.  E-commerce got legs in 2010, and in 2011 is due to start running: Whether it’s due to greater demand from enterprises to access consumer technology for marketing purposes, or the potential of location based advertising or even the projection that mobiles will replace credit cards – it seems e-commerce is expected to ramp up attention.
  3.  Security threats: mobile-specific security problems are due to be topical in 2011, as internet access via mobile picks up pace. Some firms have already made the first steps to protecting themselves with new voice technology.
  4.  Augmented reality (AR) is also set to make headway in 2011: Some would argue that from the relatively amateur approach last year, this year AR will really enhance customer experience in creating another level to mobile, which will in turn add value.
  5.  Social networking is another trend that sealed its place in the 2010 hall of fame, and it is due to really take advantage of mobile in 2011: To be successful, social media now needs to be real-time, on the pulse – and mobile is likely to be the vehicle to make this a reality (even more so that it currently is!).
  6.  The “personal cloud”: the ability to access information from anywhere at any time is a natural progression in the rise of the smartphones, and it is thought that this will materialize this year with greater adoption of the so-called “personal cloud”.

A key message to draw from all of this is that mobile is becoming increasingly important. Mobile’s transition to becoming the single most important technology seems unstoppable as it continues to give access to a previously unthinkable range of services, information sources, and communication capabilities. The possibilities really are endless!