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Outlook 2001
By Don L. Price   Printer Friendly Version

It is absolutely awesome, riveting, and even mind-boggling to experience how technology is impacting everything we do in business and life. It certainly leaves ones imagination, to go into overtime, trying to stay up with the latest advancements in health, economics, genetics, automation, robotics, communications, families and lifestyles.
During the 90's there was much talk and future casting of technologies and the inherent beneficial factors. But, who would ever dream (perhaps the futurist) that we would encounter such quantum leaps, in so many categories, and in some of the most challenging areas.
The most promising life changing technology is the Internet, reshaping globally every continents life style - and the event that technology may end war, as we know it today.
Futurist Stauffer, Jan-Feb 2000, "The Futurist" magazines says that "future conflicts may be limited to disrupting electronic targets rather than killing humans, Tactics in a cyber war could include hacking or jamming the enemy's computer and communications systems, using electromagnetic pulse weapons to disengage vehicle engines and other electronic devices."
The Internet is restructuring how businesses communicate with customers. With its infinity repository of data it can predict sales trends for mass customization of manufactured goods and services, lower inventories and cost, increase productivity, improve quality, shape trends, influence fashions and enable customers' to have it there way.
The Internet will provide innovative ways of reaching out and touching customers in more personable ways that will connect communities globally. Companies who embrace the attitude of "change will be constant" and strategic performance marketing, with ways to innovate interactively with customer, will be the benefactors of the customer patronage and loyalty in the future.
Huge amounts of money have been and will continue, being made faster than you ever dreamed possible, because of technology and the Internet. The Internet will happen probably only happen once in our lifetime, you will never see another phenomenon such as this the rest of your life. When you let that sink in - I think that you will agree.
There are currently 300 million Internet users worldwide and independent forecasters project that in the next 3 years this will grow to over 1 Billion users, or 1 in 6 worldwide connected to the Internet. This is the most powerful trend that has ever happened in the history of mankind. Consider this: it took radio 40 years and television 15 years to achieve the same market penetration the Internet has achieved in the last 3 years. This also means that as rapidly as the Internet has grown, its primary growth phase still lies ahead. We are just seeing the Internet emerge from its incubation phase. You will be amazed what the future brings as the Internet moves into its momentum stage on a global crossing. It will literally change every concept we have about doing business and totally change the way business is conducted over the next 3 to 10 years.

Consider the following projections from Forrester Research in their latest report:

1. Global E-commerce will be worth a STAGGERING USD 6.9 trillion by 2004 and almost 89 percent of all online transactions will be made in only 12 countries.
2. Online buyers in North America will account for just over half the total, or USD3.5 trillion. This means.50 cents of every dollar spent in North America will be spent ONLINE.
3. Asia Pacific will be the second most profitable market with a value of USD1.6 trillion.
4. Japan will continue to dominate the regional E-commerce market in Asia, with USD880 billion in sales in 2004.
5. Australia, Korea and Taiwan will also be strong players, with 16 percent of total sales in each country conducted over the Internet.
6. E-commerce sales in Europe will increase by 140 percent annually until 2004, when revenues will amount to USD1.5 trillion, or 10 percent of the total European economy.

You can see that what we have experienced, to this point, is only a fraction of what's to come. We are about to go into hyper speed into a new economy. The E-conomy -- Many say we have already arrived, but truth be known, we have merely seen the foundation being laid over the past 3 years as the internet has grown to 300 million users worldwide. What lies ahead over the next 3 to 10 years is exciting but challenging.

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