Benedict Evans on "Mobile"

Benedict Evans:

So, a simple answer to a complex question - when we say ‘mobile’ we don’t mean mobile just as when we said 'PCs’ we didn’t mean personal. This isn’t about the screen size or keyboard or location or use. Rather, the ecosystem of ARM, iOS and Android, with 10x the scale of Wintel, will become the new centre of gravity throughout computing.

Mobile as a definition has always been ambiguous. I think Evans finally nails it down here. Mobile is this combination of things that makes it powerful. There will always be a need various screen sizes, but there’s fewer and fewer things that I need a “PC” for anymore.


Each generation of technology goes through an S-curve of development - slow improvement of an impractical product, then explosively fast improvement once fundamental barriers are solved, and then slowing iteration and refinement as you solve every last issue and the curve flattens out. PCs are on that flattening part of the curve…

Some people think the next big area we’ll see this in effect is in smart watches, but really it’ll be cars. Cars have been in the flattening part of the curve since the mid 20th century. There’s been very little real improvement in a long time.

We’re about to see electric cars hit the explosive part of this curve soon.