“While the concept of self-driving car a few years ago seemed far-fetched, today, digital technology has made self-driving cars are a reality and has transformed the driving experience as well as the entire automotive industry.”
In addition, telecoms players are well positioned to provide solutions beyond the physical home environment including enabling connected work and connected cities.
Milroy says that social trends, like ageing societies, demand specific solutions around assisted living are areas that a lot of telecoms players are actively looking at.
“As the cost of healthcare rises and countries grapple with the challenges posed by ageing populations, greater focus will be placed on preventive care and providing care in the home and ageing-in-place,” Milroy adds.
“This new healthcare paradigm will see the hospital is coming to you rather than you going to the hospital, and there are huge new opportunities for ICT suppliers whose technology will enable and drive this transformation.
“Telecom players such as AT&T and Deutsche Telekom have used the power of convergence in their connected home platforms called “Digital Life” and “QIVICON” respectively.
“Google has moved away from their traditional business area to form new partnerships and new solutions.”
Several smart cities and companies already have evolved business models incorporating aspects of convergence.
Many smart cities have adopted integrated urban solutions as a part of their smart city framework, an example being The Amsterdam Smart City Consortium’s rebuild of its smart city framework integrating various sectors and industries within the city.
“Technology firms are being forced to change the way they look at the world and engage with their customers,” Milroy adds.
“For example telecoms companies traditionally report their activities in terms of broad product categories such as mobile or fixed line.
“This will change and in a few years telecoms and ICT companies will report their activities in terms of the vertical markets that they are serving. You will see revenues primarily segmented by healthcare, financial services and so on.”
Throughout New Zealand, Milroy believes that going forward, all industries will be transformed by digital technology and these transformations will have a huge impact not only on the industries themselves but also on societies and economies.
“It will affect the way we interact with each other, with our employers and with the organisations that serve us. It will change the way we serve our stakeholders and we manage our businesses,” Milroy adds.
The knock on effect is that Milroy believes connectivity and convergence will have a massive bearing on business, society and personal lives and the future of all industries would be defined by the influence and adoption of connectivity.
“As connectivity continues to drive convergence, companies need to identify adjacent, periphery products and services that can be added as a part of their portfolio in the future,” Milroy adds.
“This will define new solutions, new customers, new partnerships and new competition.”