Facebook Is Toast, Forrester CEO Says

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Apple and Google will dominate the emerging digital economy while Facebook "is toast," claimed George Colony, CEO of Forrester, in the opening key note of the analyst group's European forum in Paris.

George COlony

Colony's provocative predictions came at the conclusion of a session where he challenged IT leaders to "disrupt or be disrupted" and pushed Forrester's theme that Chief Information Officers and the departments they manage need to transform themselves to focus on business technology

The Forrester CEO focused on the accelerating pace of innovation and predicted that mobile engagement will bring as profound a change to business technology as the client-server revolution of the 1980s.

Mobile engagement, built on architectural change brought about by the app internet will replace the broader Web as the focus of innovation and change, he said.

For CIOs it means, "You are going to put your company in the pocket of customers so that when they need you, they are in contact and you are there for them anytime, anywhere."

Mobile engagement brings insight from a range of technologies:

Devices and sensors -- essentially location, identity and behavior. Historical perspectives from records, such as purchase history, order status, supply chain inventory and customer records.Social media.Public as-a-service capabilities, such as mapping smart products, which offer personal insights, such as health data.

These technologies feed into predictive analytics to yield what Colony dubbed "prognostics" -- or guides to action and available choices.

Colony insisted that the old PC model is dead and more controversially that the Cloud Computing model was also dead because it "doesn't leverage power in your pocket." Future architecture will marry powerful data capabilities, held in the Cloud, with powerful apps on personal devices, he said.

Looking at the vendors that will dominate the future, Apple and Google will thrive in this mobile engagement dominated world, said Colony, while Amazon will also be a competitor. Microsoft, which yesterday announced its tablet computer, has a chance.

"I don't know if it will be successful," said Colony. "We haven't lived with Windows 8 yet."

He then described Facebook as "half way there," before adding: "I think Facebook is toast. The company is in major trouble around mobile engagement and the app Internet."

Why else would CEO Mark Zuckerberg buy Instagram or be talking about launching a mobile phone, he asked.

This story, "Facebook Is Toast, Forrester CEO Says" was originally published by Computerworld UK.

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